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FOXBOROUGH, MA - OCTOBER 04: Sony Michel #26 of the New England Patriots runs with the ball during the first half against the Indianapolis Colts at Gillette Stadium on October 4, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com

A week after one of their best rushing performances of the season, the Patriots ground game could be getting a boost.

Running back Sony Michel practiced with the team on Thursday for the first time in over a month. Michel was placed on IR back on October 5 with a quad injury. Last time Michel played, he racked up 117 yards on nine carries against the Raiders in Week 3. Second-year back Damien Harris has played well in his place, including a carrer-high 102 yard performance last week.

The team was also without a handful of key players on Thursday, highlighted by cornerback Stephon Gilmore. Gilmore missed last week’s game with what was described as a ‘minor’ knee issue.

Wide Receiver N’Keal Harry also was not present. He hasn’t played or practiced since suffering a concussion two weeks ago against San Francisco. With the Patriots bringing in two new receivers this week (and trying to add a third), it’s worth wondering if Harry’s absence could be extended.

Defensive tackle Lawrence Guy also didn’t practice. He left Sunday’s game against Buffalo early with a shoulder injury. Down potentially two defensive tackles in Guy and Carl Davis (concussion), the team added defensive tackle Isaiah Mack via waivers on Tuesday, and added Ryan Glasgow to the practice squad on Wednesday.

Running back J.J. Taylor and practice squad defensive end Rashod Berry were also absent from practice.

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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at Alexander.Barth@bbgi.com.