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LB Dane Fletcher sidelined by groin

12/22/2013

BALTIMORE -- New England Patriots linebacker Dane Fletcher, who plays in the dime defense and is a core special-teamer, is inactive for Sunday's game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Fletcher was a game-time decision, going through an extensive test in front of Patriots team doctor Thomas Gill, head strength coach Harold Nash, football research director Ernie Adams and others.

His absence opens the door for rookie linebacker Steve Beauharnais, the seventh-round pick out of Rutgers, to be active. Also, rookie defensive end Michael Buchanan, who was inactive last week, is active today and could help fill Fletcher's void on special teams.

The full list of Patriots inactive players:

LB Dane Fletcher

DT Isaac Sopoaga

TE D.J. Williams

DE Jake Bequette

LT Nate Solder

WR Josh Boyce

WR Kenbrell Thompkins

The full list of Ravens inactives:

CB Asa Jackson

S Omar Brown

LB Albert McClellan

C Ryan Jensen

WR Deonte Thompson

TE Dallas Clark

DT Brandon Williams