Less than a day removed from enduring their worst loss of the season, the Falcons could find themselves without one of its best players on a short week.
NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Monday that Atlanta is not optimistic about veteran Cordarrelle Patterson's status for Thursday Night Football against New England as he continues to undergo testing for a sprained ankle.
The injury, which Patterson suffered in the first quarter of Sunday's 43-3 loss to the Cowboys, could sideline one of the season's breakout talents for a couple of weeks, Pelissero added.
The Falcons star was listed Monday as a limited participant in Atlanta's estimated practice report.
Patterson briefly returned in the second quarter against Dallas but did not play in the second half. He compiled four rushes for 25 yards and one catch for 14 yards prior to his exit.
Long classified as a dynamic return specialist, Patterson was enjoying the best season of his nine-year career as a running back/receiver hybrid in Arthur Smith's offense. Through nine games played, the explosive 30-year-old had accumulated career highs in receiving yards (473), rushing yards (303) and rushing TDs (5).
Facing a Patriots defense fresh off a dominant showing versus the Browns, the 4-5 Falcons will miss every bit of Patterson's game-wrecking ability as they look to stay afloat in a tight NFC South race. Missing TNF will also rob Patterson of the chance to show out against the team with which he won Super Bowl LIII in 2019.
In addition to the short-term impact, the amount of time Patterson remains out of action could wind up having long-term effects on where the club finishes in the standings. But that still remains to be seen.