The New England Patriots placed cornerback Stephon Gilmore on the Physically Unable to Perform, or "PUP" list, on Tuesday morning. The Patriots then said that they don't expect Gilmore to practice with the team until after Week 6, which means he won't be able to take the field until at least Week 7 of the 2021 NFL season.
Stephon Gilmore suffered a torn quad last December that required him to undergo surgery to repair the injury. Gilmore, although he has been present at training camp, hasn't participated in any offseason or preseason activities or games.
What is the NFL's PUP list?
PUP stands for "physically unable to perform". Players who are placed on the PUP list have suffered an injury during football activities prior to the start of the annual training camp. NFL players who are placed on the list are allowed to attend team meetings and use the team facilities for rehabbing and medical purposes.
Players on the PUP list, however, can't practice with their teams while on the list. Once a player is healthy and returns to practice, they are elevated from the PUP list to the active roster.
Implications of Patriots putting CB Stephen Gilmore on it
But it also means the Patriots will be without Gilmore, a four-time Pro Bowler and 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year and Interceptions leader. Gilmore is a big part of the Patriots defense and to be without him for at least the first six weeks of the season is a big loss for the team.
The Patriots will have to lean on the corners they do have on the roster. The New England Patriots traded for corner Shaun Wade from the Baltimore Ravens last week in anticipation of Gilmore not being ready for the start of the season. The Patriots also have Jalen Mills and Joejuan Williams, who will compete for time at the cornerback position.
It's also not a secret the Stephon Gilmore wants to negotiate his contract. Gilmore is currently in the final year of his contract with the Patriots and is set to make $7.7 million. With his playing resume, Gilmore should be ranked among the highest-paid corners in the league but is currently ranked 26th in corner salaries.