The Patriots placed Ras-I Dowling on IR Saturday. (FILE:Icon/SMI)

The New England Patriots announced yesterday evening that veteran running back Kevin Faulk and defensive lineman Brandon Deaderick have been activated to the 53-man roster from the reserve/physically unable to perform list. The Patriots were inside of a three week window to make a decision on the players.

Unfortunately, the team also placed rookie cornerback Ras-I Dowling on injured reserve with a hip injury. The 23-year-old Dowling played in the first two games of the season before missing the next four games with a multitude of injuries. The rookie’s hip and hamstring injuries lingered throughout the year.

The Patriots secondary, ranked 32nd against the pass, now has even more question marks surrounding them after releasing Leigh Bodden and then losing Dowling for the rest of 2011. It will be interesting to see how the team responds moving forward.

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