Koppen, Pryor to IR

While the Patriots haven’t suffered as many devastating injuries as the Giants or Chiefs, the injury bug has still wriggled its way into the roster.

Two key cogs in the trenches – starting center Dan Koppen (leg) and defensive tackle Myron Pryor (groin) – were placed on injured reserve Wednesday.

Despite some athletic limitations, Koppen is the leader of a veteran offensive line that was one of the top units in 2010. In fact, the Patriots ranked second with a 4.82-yard average rushing up the middle, according to the Football Outsiders Almanac.

Former starting guard Dan Connolly will be the full-time starting center, making the late signing of Pro Bowl guard Brian Waters even more important.

The team re-signed Landon Cohen to replace Pryor. Cohen finished last season with the Pats and recorded three tackles in two games.

Banged-up players

Tight end Aaron Hernandez has a sprained MCL and could miss anywhere from one to six weeks, according to various reports.

Safety Pat Chung had a cast on his hand after injuring his thumb against the Chargers.

Cornerback Ras-I Dowling did not return after leaving with a thigh injury against the Chargers. Dowling had started the first two games opposite Devin McCourty.

Defensive tackle Mike Wright suffered a concussion in week one. Wright missed the final six regular season games and was unavailable for the playoffs after suffering the same injury last year.