Patriots' Sony Michel undergoes minor knee surgery

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The reason for Sony Michel's absence from offseason workouts is finally clear.

The New England Patriots running back underwent a knee scope, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported. The Athletic first reported the news.

The procedure is considered minor and Michel should be fine for training camp at the end of July, Rapoport added.

The running back was not seen at any of the Patriots practices open to the media this offseason, including last week's minicamp.

Michel has a history of knee issues, dating back to high school when he tore his ACL, and he suffered another knee injury in college. The running back missed the season opener last year after undergoing a knee procedure at the start of training camp. The history makes any news about Michel's knees noteworthy, even if the latest surgery was considered minor.

Despite missing three games over the course of the season, Michel led the Pats with 209 regular-season carries and became the focal point of the offense down the stretch and into the playoffs. In the playoffs, Michel toted the rock 71 times in three games for 336 yards and a rookie-record six postseason rushing TDs as the Patriots rode the ground game to the Super Bowl title.

Missing offseason workouts isn't the worst thing for a running back, but did hinder his chances to expand his pass-catching acumen. Assuming he's healthy by training camp, Michel should enter the season as the lead back. The Patriots drafted Damien Harris in the third round, and the Alabama product looks ready to help take some of the load off Michel's knees, along with James White, Rex Burkhead and re-signed Brandon Bolden.

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