Nov. 19 (UPI) — After an extended absence due to a toe injury, the New England Patriots activated starting offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn from injured reserve.
The Patriots announced the move Tuesday. The team placed wide receiver and return specialist Gunner Olszewski on IR in a corresponding roster move.
New England originally selected Wynn in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft out of Georgia. He spent his rookie season on injured reserve with a torn Achilles that he sustained in the preseason.
With Wynn sitting out the entire 2018-19 campaign, he learned from veteran offensive lineman Trent Brown and Patriots offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia. Brown joined the Oakland Raiders in free agency this past off-season, pushing Wynn into the starting lineup this season.
Wynn, 23, started at left tackle in the Patriots’ first two games of the season before suffering his toe injury against the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 15. He was subsequently placed on injured reserve Sept. 17.
The return of Wynn will provide a needed boost to the Patriots’ offensive line. Veteran tackle Marshall Newhouse, who has served as Wynn’s temporary replacement, ranks 113th among all offensive linemen in the league with a 63.4 pass-blocking grade, according to Pro Football Focus.
Newhouse also ranks 161st in pressure percentage and has a run-blocking grade of 51.2, which puts him at 74th among all tackles in the NFL with at least 100 snaps played, according to PFF.