Patriots get devastating news on Kendrick Bourne injury
Kendrick Bourne tore his ACL during Sunday’s loss to the Dolphins, in the worst possible injury news for the Patriots wide receiver and the team. Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network was first to report it.
It’s a devastating way for anyone’s season to end, and in the case of Bourne, it cuts short one of the most promising seasons for a Patriots player amid a tough 2023 season. Bourne was on pace for 79 receptions, 863 yards, and nine touchdowns as easily New England’s most productive wide receiver. He finishes 2023, and perhaps his Patriots tenure, with a 37-406-4 line.
Bourne played 32 offensive snaps before suffering his injury during the first play of the fourth quarter. He was certain to be a fixture in the Patriots offense for the rest of the 2023 season.
His absence should lead to more work for dynamic rookie receiver Demario Douglas, who ended up leading all Pats receivers on Sunday with 41 offensive snaps (77 percent). Fellow rookie Kayshon Boutte has been absent since Week 1, but figures to have a chance to get more work with Bourne out. Jalen Reagor has also made apparent progress in the offense, having played 31 snaps on Sunday, but was targeted twice without making a catch.
The Patriots will likely lean even more on struggling veteran DeVante Parker, who has just 15 catches for 158 yards without a touchdown in seven games. Additionally, JuJu Smith-Schuster returned to the active lineup on Sunday, but played only 18 snaps. He did make a touchdown catch, as offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien schemed him wide open at the goal line.
No matter how the Patriots deploy their receivers for the rest of the season, the Bourne injury is a catastrophic blow to an offense that was struggling to consistently move the ball and score points with him.
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Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 ThSports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Check out all of Matt’s content here.