The Patriots will do some shuffling on the offensive line for Sunday's game against Buffalo. Star guard Logan Mankins is expected to be out with a knee injury. He did not practice today. Donald Thomas, a former Dolphin who hadn't started a game since 2009 before Saturday, likely will take Mankins' spot. Left tackle Matt Light missed last week's game with an ankle injury suffered in pregame warmups. He was limited in practice today. Right tackle Sebastian Vollmer did not practice due to back and foot injuries.
Vollmer has been injured for long stretches of the season. He has played six games. Rookie first-round draft pick Nate Solder has seen extensive action all year. He would fill in for Light. If both Light and Vollmer can't play, then rookie fifth-round pick Marcus Cannon would get pressed into service. He played part of the Denver game two weeks ago and all of the Miami game last Saturday.
Despite the patchwork line, Pats QB Tom Brady still passed for 304 yards in the 27-24 win over the Dolphins. Brady also missed practice today, but his absence was listed as not football related. Brady landed hard on his non-throwing shoulder in Saturday's game and was favoring it afterward.
Other Pats starters who were limited in practice included: WRs Wes Welker and Deion Branch, C Dan Connolly, G Brian Waters, LBs Rob Ninkovich and Brandon Spikes, CBs Devin McCourty and Kyle Arrington and safeties Patrick Chung and James Ihedigbo.
For Buffalo, receiver Brad Smith sat out with a sore hamstring.