FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — New England Patriots rookie Marcus Jones, who has provided a spark as a three-way threat playing cornerback, receiver and kickoff/punt returner, will not play in Sunday’s critical game against the visiting Miami Dolphins because of a concussion, the team has announced.
Jones was officially ruled out Friday after not practicing all week. He entered the concussion protocol after last week’s 22-18 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in which he returned an interception 69 yards for a touchdown and also recovered a fumble late in the game — a play in which he remained down afterward and required medical attention .
Jones was one of four players the Patriots ruled out for Sunday’s game, joining fellow rookie cornerback Jack Jones (knee), starting receiver DeVante Parker (concussion) and No. 2 tight end Jonnu Smith (concussion).
The Patriots (7-8) need to beat the Dolphins (8-7) to keep their playoff hopes alive, and they face a potential dire situation at cornerback as they attempt to slow down Miami’s speedy, dynamic receiving corps led by Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle.
In addition to being without the two rookies, starting cornerback Jonathan Jones was limited in practice all week with a chest injury and is being listed as questionable. Fellow starter Jalen Mills, who has missed the past three games because of a groin injury, returned to practice Friday as a limited participant and is also questionable.
Third-year player Myles Bryant (5-foot-9, 185) and second-year player Shaun Wade (6-1, 191) are the lone healthy cornerbacks on the active roster.
The Patriots have until 4 pm ET on Saturday to add reinforcements, with elevations for practice-squad cornerbacks Quandre Mosely and Tae Hayes among the possibilities.