FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Good afternoon from Gillette Stadium, home of Thursday night's nationally televised contest between the New England Patriots (1-0) and New York Jets (1-0) (8:25 p.m. ET; national broadcast is NFL Network, local broadcast is WCVB; radio coverage on 98.5 The Sports Hub).
Weather conditions: A hot and humid afternoon is expected to carry into the night, as game time temperatures look to be at just around 70 degrees with nearly 90 percent humidity, according to Weather.com. While rain doesn’t figure to be a factor (zero percent chance), there will be a moderate wind of 13 miles per hour from south southwest. When thinking about the Patriots’ decision not to formally practice this week (the team had just walk throughs), one wonders if the predicted heat played a part in that. They’ll need their players at their freshest tonight.
Amendola, Gronk unlikely to play: As we had suspected, the Patriots are likely to be without wide receiver Danny Amendola and tight end Rob Gronkowski this evening, league sources told ESPN’s NFL Insider Adam Schefter. They were both listed as doubtful on the injury report. Other players of note nursing injuries include running backs Leon Washington and Brandon Bolden, offensive lineman Will Svitek, safeties Duron Harmon and Nate Ebner, wide receivers Matthew Slater and Aaron Dobson, as well as tight end Zach Sudfeld.
Marathon victims to be honored: The Patriots will conduct a pregame ceremony to honor victims from the Boston Marathon bombing. They will remain in attendance for the game.
National Anthem: The National Anthem will be performed by members of the Boston-based band Gentleman Hall.
Color Guard: The Color Guard will be the USS Constitution out of Charleston, Mass. Navy Yard.
Cheffers on the call: Carl Cheffers will lead tonight’s officiating crew.