The New England Patriots need to regain their form if they intend on getting back to the Super Bowl in 2016. That means they need to get players healthy and back from injuries if they have any chance at making a real run. With Julian Edelman on the brink of being back, the last thing the Patriots need is Tom Brady hurt which is the case as the quarterback walks around with a noticeable limp.
Having the week off is beneficial to the Patriots who are hoping to get Julian Edelman back into action while giving Brady rest. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Brady suffered a sprained ankle in the loss to the Miami Dolphins, but will be fine come the divisional game. The quarterback did take part in the light practice on Wednesday, but was moving around with a noticeable limp. Brady's MRI revealed no structural damage as the quarterback stresses it is merely sore right now.
"Feeling better, Better than I was a couple days ago," Brady said, via ESPN.com. "I'll just work hard to get the right treatment. I've always dealt with injuries. I'm very confident I know how to deal with injuries. Believe me, I'll be doing everything I can to be out there. There is nothing else in my life that's a priority at this point other than getting to feel like I'm 100 percent."
Having Brady healthy is good, but having Edelman back might be better. According to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com, Edelman will play in the divisional game after healing from a broken foot. He will not be on the field for every snap like he normally would, but the coaches feel he can still make a big impact with Danny Amendola and Rob Gronkowski. The passing game has been limited with Edelman out as Brady understands just how important it is to get the receiver back in action.
"He's been very dependable, a great player for us, hugely critical to our success," Brady said, via sports radio station WEEI. "Hopefully he's ready to go. We'll see in a couple weeks. Obviously, I'm hoping he's out there."
With Edelman back to stabilize the passing game, the Patriots need Steven Jackson to help the run game. In need of replacing LeGarrette Blount, Jackson was signed as a similar back. Having sat out the entire season, Jackson showed some rust, but head coach Bill Belichick noted that he is picking things up easily. Jackson will get the bulk of the carries for the Patriots in the divisional game while James White can make an impact as the passing-down back.
"He's got a great attitude and he's picked things up well and has gotten better," Belichick said, via ESPN.com. "Really literally every day he walks of the field is better than it was the day before, including the games, which again are limited, but hopefully there will be more of them."