We covered the Patriots adding another offensive lineman earlier on Saturday and speculated that Matt Tennant is on the roster because one of the team’s three questionable offensive linemen wouldn’t be able to play against the Bills on Sunday.
It looks like that’s the case. Tom Curran of CSNNewEngland.com reports that left guard Logan Mankins did not make the trip to Buffalo with the rest of the team and will therefore be out of the lineup. Mankins has been bothered by a hip injury that kept him out of practice all week. Donald Thomas will likely start in Mankins’ place on Sunday.
There’s better news about another member of the Pats listed as questionable with a hip injury. Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that tight end Rob Gronkowski will be available on Sunday. Gronkowski popped up on the injury report Friday after he was a limited participant in the team’s practice. He was able to go full on Tuesday and Wednesday, though, and it seems that whatever slowed him down at the end of the week won’t be enough to keep him out of the game.
With Aaron Hernandez out, the Patriots couldn’t really afford to be without Gronkowski for a game that they need to win to avoid a 1-3 start to a season they entered as favorites in the AFC East.