New England Patriots punter Ryan Allen was injured during the team's playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts on a wild play that started with a botched snap and ended in a safety. Fortunately for the Pats, they won't have to use a roster spot on another option with the news from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport that Allen will play Sunday against the Denver Broncos.
Place kicker Stephen Gostkowski filled in for Allen after the injury, kicking five punts for 209 yards (a 41.8 yard average), planting two of the punts inside the 20-yard line. A rookie out of Louisiana Tech, Allen had 76 punts in the regular season for an average of 45.9 yards per punt, with a long of 65 yards. None of his punt attempts were blocked all season long.
Gostkowski had never before punted in NFL competition, which means the Patriots are fortunate to have Allen ready to compete. The fact they made no moves before the game for another punter pointed to Allen's inclusion, but he'd been listed as questionable on the team's injury report.