Marcus Jones is a valuable player with his versatility and athleticism, but unfortunately for the New England Patriots, the 2022 third-round draft pick will miss the remainder of the 2023 NFL season.
Jones suffered a torn labrum against the Miami Dolphins in Week 2 and was placed on injured reserve shortly after. Patriots wide receivers coach Troy Brown revealed Tuesday that Jones won't be back this year.
Jones was a first-team All-Pro selection as a punt returner last season. He primarily played cornerback, but also saw snaps at wide receiver, where the Patriots used his speed to great effect. His touchdown catch against the Buffalo Bills last December is the best example. He also scored a game-winning punt return touchdown against the New York Jets last November in one of the most memorable plays of the Patriots' 2022 season.
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Rookie wide receiver Demario Douglas has been given more reps as a punt returner in Jones' absence this season. Douglas had a nice return in Sunday's win over the Buffalo Bills that helped set up a field goal before halftime.
New England's secondary has been hit hard by injuries this season. Rookie standout Christian Gonzalez is on injured reserve with a shoulder injury. Jonathan Jones and Jack Jones each have missed multiple games due to injury but are back in the lineup. The Patriots acquired J.C. Jackson earlier this month and he's played in two games so far.
The Patriots will try to win consecutive games for the first time this season when they travel to Miami for Sunday's Week 8 game against the Dolphins. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET.