When opening kickoff for the Patriots 2010 season takes place, there will be a few notable names among the missing against the Bengals. New England will play without RB Laurence Maroney, DB Terrence Wheatley and OL Nick Kaczur.
As the Patriots prepare to take on a much-improved Cincinnati Bengals team, some key players are not going to be on the field. New England will try to get the ground game going without Maroney. Sammy Morris and Fred Taylor are savvy veterans who give New England most of what they need in the backfield. Kevin Faulk will be the reliable third down (change of pace) back the team needs.
The offensive line takes a hit with Nick Kaczur missing from the lineup, but second-year stud Sebastian Vollmer has shown he can handle the load. Vollmer filled in at both right and left tackle positions for the Patriots last year demonstrating the ability to play swing tackle as needed.
More troubling is the loss of defensive back Terrence Wheatley, who has been a component of New England's young defensive backfield. With Wheatley out and Leigh Bodden done for the year, the team has a definitive youth movement in place. Rookie Devin McCourty looks to have the lead on starting opposite last year's rookie Darius Butler. Jonathan Wilhite and co will be the backups.
Here' s the inactives for Sunday
DL Brandon Deaderick
WR Julian Edelman
LB Dane Fletcher
OT Nick Kaczur
TE Steve Maneri
RB Laurence Maroney
WR Taylor Price
CB Terrence Wheatley
DB Brandon Ghee
RB Brian Leonard
LB Roddrick Muckelroy
C Reggie Stephens
WR Andre Caldwell
DL Pat Sims
DL Carlos Dunlap
QB Dan LeFevour (3rd QB)
Maroney Sits Out Season Opener
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