Report: Patriots’ Christian Gonzalez, Matthew Judon both expected to miss time due to dislocated shoulder, bicep injury


Both Gonzalez and Judon could miss significant time due to their respective injuries.

New England Patriots cornerback Christian Gonzalez (6) is escorted off the field after an injury during an NFL Football game against the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Nov. 1, 2023.
Christian Gonzalez reportedly suffered a dislocated shoulder on Sunday. Michael Ainsworth / AP Photo

The hits keep on coming for the Patriots after their lopsided loss to the Cowboys on Sunday evening.

To add injury to the insult of a 35-point loss to Dallas (the largest margin of defeat for Bill Belichick in his head-coaching career), the Patriots’ defense reportedly will be without its two most impactful players in the weeks ahead.

According to Jeff Howe of The Athletic, rookie cornerback Christian Gonzalez is expected to “miss some time” after dislocating his shoulder during Sunday’s loss against the Cowboys.

Howe added that the reigning NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month is still undergoing testing to determine the severity of his injury.

WEEI’s Mike Kadlick was the first to report the reason behind Gonzalez’s injury, with the rookie corner exiting Sunday’s game in the first quarter while trying to tackle Dallas running back Tony Pollard. 

New England also lost its top pass rusher in Matthew Judon during Sunday’s road contest, with the veteran linebacker exiting in the fourth quarter with what was initially listed as an elbow injury. Following the game, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that Judon “is being evaluated for a biceps tendon injury.”

Howe had more bad news to share on Judon’s status, noting on Monday afternoon that the four-time Pro Bowler is “expected to be out for a while” due to a biceps-related injury.

A bicep tear could run the risk of being a season-ending injury for Judon, with defensive captain Deatrich Wise hammering home the severity of his teammates’ injury following Sunday’s loss.

“Devastating. Devastating. … he was in good spirits,” Wise said of Judon. “We’ll be with him mentally throughout this year, and I know he’ll be with us, too. There will be some guys behind him who will be stepping up and filling in his spot.”

Judon has been arguably New England’s most impactful player since arriving in New England in 2021, recording 32.0 sacks in 35 career games with the Patriots.

But Gonzalez has also been a game-changer in New England’s secondary as a rookie, with the 2023 first-round pick keeping a defensive backfield afloat that is currently trudging along without Marcus Jones (IR), Jack Jones (IR), and Jonathan Jones, who has missed the last three games with an ankle injury.

Prior to his injury, Gonzalez played all but one defensive snap on New England’s defense, serving as the team’s No. 1 boundary corner and winning daunting matchups against other team’s top receiving threats like A.J. Brown, Tyreek Hill, Garrett Wilson, and CeeDee Lamb.

With Gonzalez now expected to be on the shelf, New England’s starting cornerbacks on the outside are Myles Bryant and Shaun Wade, although Jalen Mills will also likely slot back over to corner if needed.

Just one play after Gonzalez exited Sunday’s game, Lamb torched Bryant out on the outside and reeled in a 20-yard touchdown for the Cowboys.