New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - DECEMBER 28: A general view before the game between the Buffalo Bills and the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on December 28, 2020 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Getty Images)

By Matt Dolloff,

The Patriots’ already shaky run defense could spring another leak on Monday night. They’ll be without one of their top run defenders against the Buffalo Bills, as defensive tackle Lawrence Guy was listed as inactive for the game.

New England will also be without team captain Ja’Whaun Bentley, who leads all linebackers on the team with 555 defensive snaps on the season. Pass-rusher Shilique Calhoun is also inactive again after returning from injured reserve in Week 15 against the Dolphins. Monday will be only the second game Guy has missed since signing with the Patriots in 2017.

Rounding out the inactives are running back Damien Harris, who will miss his second straight game, quarterback Brian Hoyer, and center Marcus Martin, a new signing that the team announced on Monday.

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Martin was ostensibly an emergency signing in the event that starting center David Andrews couldn’t play against the Bills. Andrews is active Monday night after being listed as questionable with a calf injury.

Cam Newton is reportedly the starting quarterback Monday night. However, he and Jarrett Stidham both took turns throwing passes to Jakobi Meyers in warmups, per Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal.

The Bills enter Monday’s game just 15th in the NFL yards per carry. It’ll be interesting to see if they de-emphasize their superior passing game (sixth in NFL in passing yards) to take advantage of a Patriots run defense that has allowed 5.6 yards per carry over the last two games. And that was with Guy in the lineup.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff or send him a nasty email at