New England Patriots

Nov 7, 2021; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New England Patriots running back Damien Harris (37) scores a touchdown in the second quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots got out of Charlotte with another impressive win, but their 24-6 victory over the Carolina Panthers came at a cost in terms of health.

Most concerning is that three Patriots left Sunday’s win with head injuries: running backs Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson, and punt returner/wide receiver Gunner Olszewski. Harris and Stevenson were ruled “questionable” to return late in the fourth quarter, so they didn’t have a chance to be ruled out.

Olszewski, meanwhile, exited the game permanently soon after being deemed questionable. The Patriots’ dynamic punt returner took a vicious hit from the Panthers’ Frankie Luvu and appeared woozy after the play. There was clear helmet contact on the hit.

Harris’ injury came after the third-year back scored a rushing touchdown for the fifth week in a row. It was also Stevenson’s most productive game to date, leading the Patriots with 106 total yards from scrimmage.

Head injuries are typically concussions, but that hasn’t been explicitly reported. The severity of all three head injuries are unknown as of Monday morning. It’ll certainly be something to monitor when the Patriots start practicing on Wednesday, particularly at the running back position.

As for punt returner, Jakobi Meyers was the emergency fill-in for one return against the Panthers. If Olszewski has to miss time, it’ll be interesting to see if that stays the same or if the Patriots prepare someone else with a full week of practice.

MORE: Patriots-Panthers Ups & Downs – Almost a Perfect Score on Defense

Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster 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 and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at

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