Patriots place Jerod Mayo on IR

New England takes another big hit with the loss of its best linebacker.

New England Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo has been placed on the injured reserve list with a pectoral injury, ending his season. The team has signed defensive tackle Andre Neblett, according to the Patriots official site.

Mayo was injured in the second half against the New Orleans Saints in New England's 30-27 comeback victory last weekend. The former University of Tennessee star has 55 tackles on the season, leading the team, to go with 1.5 sacks.

With both Mayo and Vince Wilfork on the shelf for the year, the Patriots will have to hope their depth is solid up the middle of the field. Mayo is also very good in coverage, something that is an underrated part of his game.

According to Pro Football Focus, Mayo is the highest rated player on the team in pass coverage other than Devin McCourty and Aqib Talib. Surprisngly, only defensive tackle Joe Vellano is ranked worse against the run than Mayo.

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