Battered Patriots soldier on

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Injuries are common throughout the NFL, but what the Patriots have suffered borders on the absurd. Six key starters are gone: Vince Wilfork, Rob Gronkowski, Jerod Mayo, Sebastian Vollmer, Tommy Kelly, and Brandon Spikes.

Next man up? More like next men up.

“Sometimes you look at the Patriots and you say they’re being held together with duct tape,” said CBS commentator Dan Dierdorf. “And to think that they finished 12-4 and earned a bye and are sitting at home waiting for the Colts, you can’t look at the Patriots without a great deal of admiration.”

It’s hard to argue that any team has reached the Super Bowl, let alone won it, with as many impact players on the sideline as this year’s Patriots team has.

Not that the Patriots have let it faze them.

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