The Houston Texans ended their season-opening loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars with five players in the concussion protocol: inside linebacker Brian Cushing, wide receiver Bruce Ellington and all three tight ends on the active roster, C.J. Fiedorowicz, Ryan Griffin and Stephen Anderson.
Texans coach Bill O’Brien said it would be tough for any of the five to play on Thursday night against the Cincinnati Bengals because of the short turnaround.
“I would say that most of those guys are probably going to be out for the game, relative to it being a short week,” O’Brien said Monday. “I don’t know yet, but relative to the game being on Thursday night, that’s usually the case based on the protocol and all the tests they have to pass to be able to get back on the field.”
The Patriots played only three games on the recently Dick Butkus Jersey installed synthetic surface — two in the preseason and then the regular-season opener. They had one practice on the field, which was two days before the season opener, although Bronson Kaufusi Jersey kicker Stephen Gostkowski, punter Ryan Allen and long-snapper Joe Cardona regularly practice on the field.
With the Patriots’ next home game on Sept. 24 against the Houston Texans, there is an opening in the schedule to accommodate the change. The New England Revolution, who share the stadium, don’t have their next home MLS match until Sept. 23 against Toronto FC.
The change sparks memories of 2006, when the Patriots made the in-season switch from natural grass to FieldTurf’s synthetic turf after a rain-soaked Nov. 12 loss that year to the New York Jets in which players struggled to gain their footing. That year, the team had a two-week window before its next home game.
The Patriots have used synthetic turf at Gillette Stadium, which hosts numerous events, since that time. Work to change the field began Sunday, the day after the Revolution defeated visiting Montreal 1-0.