New England Patriots put RB Ty Montgomery on IR with knee injury

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- The New England Patriots placed veteran running back Ty Montgomery, who had been limited because of a right knee injury, on injured reserve Tuesday.

This move means Montgomery will miss at least four games.

Montgomery had injured his right knee in the team's preseason finale on Aug. 26 and was carted from the sideline to the locker room that day. But in a surprising development, he was active for the Patriots' 20-7 season-opening loss to the Miami Dolphins. He played 21 snaps as the team's top option at running back in passing situations, totaling three receptions for 15 yards and two rushes for minus-2 yards. He scored the Patriots' lone touchdown in the game, on a 6-yard scoring pass from quarterback Mac Jones in the third quarter.

In Montgomery's absence, the Patriots could turn more to top running backs Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson in passing situations. They also have fourth-round draft pick Pierre Strong Jr. as an option, with third-year player J.J. Taylor a consideration to elevate from the practice squad.

The 6-foot, 216-pound Montgomery was also the top kickoff returner on Sunday, with one return for 28 yards.

Coach Bill Belichick has praised Montgomery multiple times since the eight-year veteran signed a one-year contract in the offseason.

"He's been great to work with -- a very smart, multiskilled, multitalented player," Belichick said. "Offensively and in the kicking game, he's shown the ability to be competitive. I'm glad we have him. I think there's a lot of different things he can do."

The Patriots (0-1) visit the Pittsburgh Steelers [1-0] on Sunday.