- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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The New England Patriots (7-3) and New York Jets (4-6) released their final injury report for the Thanksgiving game. Here is a look at who is expected to miss the AFC East showdown and what it means for both teams:
Questionable: TE Aaron Hernandez (ankle), LB Tracy White (foot), WR Wes Welker (ankle), OT Sebastian Vollmer (back, knee), LB Brandon Spikes (knee), DL Nick McDonald (shoulder), WR Brandon Lloyd (knee), LB Dont'a Hightower (hamstring), S Steve Gregory (hip), G Dan Connolly (back), S Patrick Chung (hamstring), DL Ron Brace (elbow, shoulder)
Analysis: Gronkowski is obviously the big injury for New England. He is expected to miss several weeks with a broken forearm. However, the NFL Network reports Hernandez, who is listed as "questionable," will return from his ankle injury on Thursday. That would be a big boost for New England’s top-rated offense. Jones is a loss, as well. But it’s best for him to sit this game and utilize the long week to try to get back for the next game. The Patriots have a ton of players questionable, but that’s always the case. New England coach Bill Belichick likes to keep opponents (and the media) guessing on who will play.
Probable: RB Bilal Powell (shoulder), QB Mark Sanchez (back), OL Brandon Moore (hip), OL Matt Slauson, DL Mike Devito (finger), WR Clyde Gates (shoulder), TE Jeff Cumberland (wrist), LB Calvin Pace (shoulder), WR Stephen Hill (ankle), S LaRon Landry (heel), C Nick Mangold (thumb)
Analysis: The Jets are getting healthier, and they need all their weapons to upset New England. Ellis re-injured his knee last week against the St. Louis Rams and could be the biggest question mark. But I expect pretty much all hands on deck for this game. Everyone practiced at some point during this short week and it’s a huge game. A loss would put to rest any chance of the Jets making the playoffs.