New England Patriots

  • Over the weekend, it was reported that Patriots rookie receiver Tyquan Thornton will miss time due to a shoulder injury he suffered during the team’s preseason game against the Carolina Panthers Friday night. Initially, not much was known about the nature of the injury, but more information has started to trickle out.

    According to NFL Network’s Mike Giardi, Thornton suffered a fractured clavicle – which is another way of saying a broken collarbone. Giardi adds that Thornton is expected to miss “around eight weeks.” Prior to that, the only timetable that had been reported was simply that the injury was not season ending.

    Adding to the mystery around Thornton’s injury is the fact nobody seemed to see it happen. Most observers were caught off guard when the Patriots announced late in Friday’s game that Thornton had suffered any sort of injury.

    WBZ’s Michael Hurley may have found the moment, midway through the second quarter of the game. He shared a clip Monday morning of Thornton being tackled hard, then briefly grabbing at his shoulder. That was his lone catch of the game.

  • Thornton would stay in the game after that play, and finished out the drive by covering a punt. He was then pulled along with the rest of the projected top second unit players.

    While every injury is different, NFL players have returned to play following broken collarbones in recent years. The best comp for Thornton is probably wide receiver Will Fuller, who broke his collarbone in practice in early August of 2017. He ended up missing the first three regular season games (about nine weeks total from the time of his injury) that year before returning.

    If Thornton is going to miss time, the Patriots could put him on IR to create a roster spot while he’s out. Keep in mind though, in order for him to be eligible to return he must first be included on the initial 53-man roster. If and when the Patriots do place him on IR after that, he’d have to sit a minimum of four games (up from three games last year).

  • Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 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