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Patriots starting CB Jason McCourty (groin) out vs. Texans

The New England Patriots will face a tough test in the Houston Texans in Week 13. They will do so without one of their key defensive starters. After missing last week’s contest against the Dallas Cowboys, cornerback Jason McCourty will be out once again versus the Texans.

McCourty suffered a groin injury in New England’s narrow Week 11 17-10 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. Since then, he’s been recovering from the injury and was unable to suit up in Week 12.

Before the injury, the veteran cornerback was playing well, giving up 27 receptions on 48 targets, per Pro Football Reference. McCourty has also contributed 39 tackles, six deflections, and one interception.

Luckily for the Patriots, they are deep at defensive back. With McCourty ruled out, J.C. Jackson will likely draw his second straight start at cornerback for the Patriots.

This season, the second-year cornerback has totaled 17 tackles, four deflections, and two interceptions. Last week against the Cowboys, Jackson tallied four tackles in his first start of the year.

Following the Dallas game, there were quite a few players on the Patriots’ roster to develop flu-like symptoms. Among the players who fell ill, Stephon Gilmore has been limited in practice throughout the week.

Despite his limited practices, Gilmore is expected to start for New England in Week 13 versus the Texans. There’s no doubt they’ll need him as he will be tasked with covering back-0-back All-Pro DeAndre Hopkins.

On the other side, McCourty’s replacement at cornerback will draw the responsibility of containing Will Fuller. It remains to be seen if McCourty will be back in time for New England’s highly anticipated matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 14.