The New England Patriots will have to play at least another week with standout tight end Aaron Hernandez.
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According to a source briefed on the situation, Hernandez will not play Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts because of a lingering ankle injury, reports NFL.com and NFL Network's Albert Breer.
Hernandez suffered a low ankle sprain in Week 2 against the Arizona Cardinals and was on the sideline until the Patriots' Week 6 game against the Seattle Seahawks. He played in two games, but did not travel to London to play against the St. Louis Rams. He has not played since the Patriots' victory over the New York Jets on Oct. 21.
Hernandez has missed five games over a six-week period. The ankle sprain was originally diagnosed as a four-to-six week injury. In four games this season, he has 17 receptions for 143 yards and two touchdowns.
The Patriots have won three straight and have been just fine without Hernandez. Rob Gronkowski and Wes Welker have shined in his absence.
Follow Kareem Copeland on Twitter @kareemcopeland.