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Stevan Ridley (knee) absent while 15 limited at Patriots practice 09.25.13 at 5:59 pm ET
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FOXBORO — Danny Amendola (groin), Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm) and linebacker Jerod Mayo (ankle) were among 15 players limited at practice on Wednesday while Stevan Ridley (knee), Matthew Slater (wrist) and Vince Wilfork (Achilles) were the three missing player as the Patriots returned to practice in preparation for the Bengals this Sunday in Cincinnati. Wilfork is expected to go on season-ending injured reserve shortly after his surgery on Tuesday to repair the Achilles tendon tear on Sunday night in Atlanta.

The Bengals had three key players missing from practice as defensive end Michael Johnson (concussion) and cornerbacks Leon Hall (hamstring) and Dre Kirkpatrick (hamstring) were all absent.

Here is Wednesday’s complete report:

Did Not Practice
RB Stevan Ridley (knee)
ST Matthew Slater (wrist)
NT Vince Wilfork (Achilles)

Limited Participation
WR Danny Amendola (groin)
DB Kyle Arrington (groin)
RB Brandon Bolden (knee)
CB Marquice Cole (hamsting)
WR Aaron Dobson (neck)
DB Nate Ebner (ankle)
TE Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm)
LB Dont’a Hightower (knee)
LB Jerod Mayo (ankle)
TE Zach Sudfeld (hamstring)
OL Will Svitek (knee)
WR Kenbrell Thompkins (shoulder)
OL Sebastian Vollmer (foot)
RB Leon Washington (thigh)
DB Tavon Wilson (hamstring)

For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.

Read More: Danny Amendola, Gronk, Jerod Mayo, Matthew Slater
Patriots practice Wednesday: No Sebastian Vollmer, Matthew Slater at 10:39 am ET
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FOXBORO — Sebastian Vollmer and Matthew Slater were the only players missing from Patriots practice Wednesday morning on the grass fields outside Gillette Stadium.

The team practiced in full pads as they prepare for the Falcons on Sunday night at the Georgia Dome.

Slater is out 4-6 weeks after breaking his wrist in the Sept. 12 game against the Jets while Vollmer appeared to injure his foot in the first half of Sunday’s win over Tampa Bay.

Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald reported that Vollmer sustained “only” a foot sprain and the injury is not considered serious. Still, his availability this Sunday night is in question.

Vollmer did not play in the second half and was replaced at right tackle by Marcus Cannon. Vollmer was not spotted in the locker room but was seen leaving Gillette Stadium in a walking boot, according to a report from Comcast’s Mike Giardi.

If the Patriots lose the 6-foot-8, 320-pound right tackle, the depth impact could be felt immediately as they face road tests in Atlanta and Cincinnati in back-to-back weeks before hosting New Orleans. In his third season, Cannon did play well in the second half against Tampa Bay as the Patriots played with the lead.

Danny Amendola (groin) appeared to be moving slightly better but was still not at full speed. Amendola has missed the last two games after reinjuring his groin in Week 1 at Buffalo.

Read More: Atlanta Falcons, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots, nfl
Setting the scene: Patriots-Buccaneers from Gillette 09.22.13 at 10:22 am ET
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FOXBORO — For the second straight week, rain could play a factor in a Patriots home game at Gillette Stadium.

Partly cloudy skies with breaks of sun and temperatures in the mid-60s are expected for the 1 p.m. kickoff between the Patriots and Buccaneers as New England looks to improve to 3-0 for the fourth time in the Bill Belichick era and the first time since 2007.

But there is a 30 percent chance of showers after halftime.

Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola and Leon Washington were among the seven listed as inactive for the game.

Gronkowski was listed as questionable (50-50 to play) on the team’s final official injury report on Friday.
The only player ruled out on Friday was special teams captain Matthew Slater, out 4-6 weeks with a broken wrist.

This will be the first of two straight games against the NFC South for the Patriots as they visit Atlanta for a Sunday night football encounter next week. The Patriots and Buccaneers should be very familiar with each other by now, having had three joint practices in training camp in August and having played a preseason game on Aug. 16, won by the Patriots, 25-21.

Tom Brady is 34-9 all-time against the NFC as a starter, with three of those losses coming last season as the Patriots were beaten by the Cardinals, Seahawks and 49ers. Brady will try to extend to 51 games his streak of throwing at least one touchdown pass in a game. Drew Brees has the all-time record at 54 games.

Belichick this week was asked to recall the first game of his Patriots coaching career, a 21-16 loss to Tony Dungy and the Buccaneers at old Foxboro Stadium on Sept. 3, 2000. “Yeah, it wasn’€™t a great start,” Belichick said. “We had our chances there at the end. We had some shots inside the 10-yard line, 15-yard line, whatever it was down there. We just couldn’€™t get it in. So, yeah, not a great start.”

Read More: Danny Amendola, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots, nfl
Rob Gronkowski ‘questionable’ while Danny Amendola ‘doubtful’ for Sunday vs. Buccaneers 09.20.13 at 4:23 pm ET
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FOXBORO — For the first time this season, Rob Gronkowski is not doubtful to play in a game.

The Patriots tight end, who has been practicing with the team since being taken off PUP on Aug. 31, was again limited in practice on Friday but the team has officially listed him as questionable for Sunday against Tampa Bay on the official injury report. He has been limited all week and was considered to be a 50-50 proposition to play on Sunday earlier in the week.

Danny Amendola, who was also listed as limited in practice, is not as likely to play. He was categorized as “doubtful” with an ongoing groin injury.

Special teams captain Matthew Slater is the only player ruled out for Sunday with a wrist injury.

Here is Friday’s report:

Did Not Practice
ST Matthew Slater (wrist) OUT

Limited Participation
WR Danny Amendola (groin) DOUBTFUL
RB Brandon Bolden (knee) QUESTIONABLE
OL Dan Connolly (finger) QUESTIONABLE
DB Nate Ebner (ankle) QUESTIONABLE
TE Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm) QUESTIONABLE
OL Will Svitek (knee) QUESTIONABLE
RB Leon Washington (thigh) QUESTIONABLE

Full Participation
TE Zach Sudfeld (hamstring) PROBABLE

For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.

Read More: Danny Amendola, Gronk, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots
Bill Belichick on Rob Gronkowski: ‘I think he’s getting better every day’ at 11:08 am ET
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FOXBORO — It was certainly far from a declaration of his readiness to play on Sunday but Bill Belichick did offer an update on Rob Gronkowski when asked Friday morning if the star tight end might make his 2013 debut against Tampa Bay.

“Rob’s been out there. I think he’s getting better every day,” Belichick said. “[He’s] working hard. No question about that.”

Gronkowski has been practicing with the Patriots every day the team has had practice since he was activated off PUP on Aug. 31. But he has been listed as “limited” on practice participation reports, including both this week, as he gets back into game condition after offseason back and forearm surgeries.

Earlier this week, ESPN’s Ed Werder reported that Gronkowski was 50-50 to play on Sunday but those expectations have reportedly dropped since. The Patriots may try to get by for another week without Gronkowski as they are playing a Tampa Bay team that has scored just 31 points in their first two games, both losses.

Read More: Bill Belichick, Gronk, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots
Patriots practice Friday: Only Matthew Slater missing at 10:47 am ET
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FOXBORO — As the Patriots fine tuned their preparations for the Buccaneers this Sunday at Gillette Stadium, Matthew Slater was the only player not accounted for at shorts and shells practice Friday on the upper grass fields under sunny, ideal conditions.

Slater, the captain of special teams and the unit’s top gunner, is expected to miss 4-6 weeks with a broken wrist suffered in the Week 2 win over the Jets.

Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola were both in attendance again for the media portion of practice outside Gillette Stadium. Like Thursday, the media was only able to observe stretching so there was no indication of how much either participated in offensive plays.

Gronkowski has practiced both before both games this season but has yet to be active for a game as he builds his conditioning back up from offseason forearm and back surgeries.

On Wednesday, Amendola appeared very limited in lateral movement as he suffered a groin injury in Week 1 and did not play in Week 2 against the Jets. The Boston Herald reports that the receiver has decided to forego surgery on a possible sports hernia for the time being and is hopeful to miss only a few week with the injury.

Read More: Danny Amendola, Gronk, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots
Patriots practice Thursday: Marquice Cole returns, Matthew Slater only player missing 09.19.13 at 11:19 am ET
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FOXBORO — Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola were both in attendance again for the media portion of Thursday’s practice on the grass fields outside Gillette Stadium. The media was only able to observe stretching Thursday so there was no indication of how much either participated in offensive plays.

Amendola was only spotted doing light running drills while Gronkowski appeared to be getting ready to take snaps with the first team offense before the media availability ended.

Matthew Slater was the only player missing from practice as Marquice Cole returned from an absence to be on hand for the birth of his child earlier in the week.

After Wednesday’s full pads practice, the Patriots practiced in shorts and shells on Thursday in preparation for their game with the Buccaneers this Sunday at Gillette Stadium.

Gronkowski has practiced both before both games this season but has yet to be active for a game as he builds his conditioning back up from offseason forearm and back surgeries.

On Wednesday, Amendola appeared very limited in lateral movement as he suffered a groin injury in Week 1 and did not play in Week 2 against the Jets. The Boston Herald reports that the receiver has decided to forego surgery on a possible sports hernia for the time being and is hopeful to miss only a few week with the injury.

Read More: Danny Amendola, Gronk, Matthew Slater, New England Patriots
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