Brown, the Patriots’ starting right tackle, left the game after the first offensive series (calf).

Trent Brown. Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini

The Patriots appeared to be missing two key contributors as they begin their on-field preparations for the New York Jets this weekend.

Both right tackle Trent Brown and outside linebacker Kyle Van Noy were not present during the portion of practice media was able to attend on Wednesday.

Brown, the team’s starting left tackle, left Sunday’s loss to the Miami Dolphins after the first offensive series with what’s been described as a minor calf strain. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Brown was day-to-day. The reason for Van Noy’s absence is as yet unknown.

The mountainous right tackle’s injury is especially troubling given that the offensive line unit allowed the Dolphins to pressure Mac Jones on 35 percent of his dropbacks during his NFL debut — most of which came after Brown left the game. The team’s ground game also had trouble after Damien Harris’s big opening run of 35 yards.


Justin Herron, Brown’s initial replacement at right tackle, struggled in relief, allowing two pressures and committing a holding penalty that wiped out a big completion from Jones to Kendrick Bourne. The second-year swing tackle was eventually benched in favor of newly acquired tackle Yasir Durant, who finished out the game.

It’s unknown at this point if either Herron or Durant would replace Brown if he can’t play Sunday or if the Patriots would consider moving Michael Onwenu, who served as the team’s primary right tackle in 2020, back outside. That said, Onwenu said Wednesday he hasn’t taken many snaps at right tackle this year, suggesting the team might prefer to go with its depth options instead.


If the talented young guard did slide back out to tackle, interior super-sub Ted Karras could take his place at left guard, which might give the team its best offensive line grouping if Brown is out of the lineup Sunday.

On a more positive note, inside linebacker Dont’a Hightower, who seemed to tweak his lower leg late in Sunday’s game, was at the media-access portion of practice and participated in warmup drills.