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Patriots reportedly expected to be without starting receiver against Eagles

More bad news for New England.

New England Patriots v Green Bay Packers Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

It looks like the Philadelphia Eagles won’t have to face DeVante Parker on Sunday.

The New England Patriots’ starting wide receiver is reportedly not expected to play due to a knee injury, according to The Athletic’s Jeff Howe. Parker was limited in practice all week before being questionable on the final injury report.

Here’s how Parker ranked in multiple categories on the Patriots last year while only playing 13 games:

  • Receiving yards: 2nd (539)
  • Targets: 6th (48)
  • Yards per reception: 1st (17.4)
  • Touchdowns: 2nd (3)
  • First downs: 2nd (25)

Parker is expected to take on an even bigger role this year with the departures of 2022 leading receiver Jakobi Meyers and Nelson Agholor. The Pats signed Parker to a two-year, $10.8 million contract extension back in late June. At the time of the deal, our associates over at Pats Pulpit said the Patriots “have big plans for Parker.” They wrote this about his projected role:

Parker’s job in New England in 2022 looked very much like it did in Miami his first seven seasons as a pro: he aligned primarily on the outside filling the X role — one is expected to also play heading into his second season as a Patriot. As such, he will be the team’s top option outside the numbers and together with speedster Tyquan Thornton provide a vertical element to the offense. Parker will also be a red zone target again due to his frame and ability to win contested catches and come down with jump balls.

It should be noted here that Thornton was placed on injured reserve, so the Pats won’t have him, either. It’s not looking like the most supporting cast for Mac Jones as he plays behind a banged up offensive line. Here are the receivers the Pats do have available:

  • JuJu Smith-Schuster
  • Kendrick Bourne
  • Ty Montgomery II
  • Demario Douglas
  • Kayshon Boutte

Safe to say this group pales in comparison to what the Birds have to offer at the position.

One may recall Parker terrorizing the Eagles as a member of the Dolphins in 2019. With Ryan Fitzpatrick throwing his way, Parker caught seven of his 10 targets for 159 yards and two touchdowns. The Eagles will not have to worry about him owning their secondary once again in this game.

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