before heading to the airport saturday, the patriots decided to keep a couple of players behind for this latest road trip to houston.
notably, defensive lineman adam butler will miss his first game of the season. he's been dealing with a shoulder injury that's limited his practice time for a few weeks now, but this is the first week he's been deemed unfit to play in a game. injuries have his the new england d-line hard of late, so that position has needed to draw from the practice squad at times. this could be yet another such occasion. the team could make further moves once they get to texas.
meanwhile, j.j. taylor isn't traveling this weekend, either. his absence shouldn't be too surprising, as the rookie ball carrier hasn't been involved in a game (inactive or just didn't play) since september. while taylor dealt with an undisclosed illness last week, he wasn't listed on this week's injury report.