Mankins left Saturday’s game and didn’t return. (FILE:Icon/SMI)

Saturday’s win over Miami may have come at a cost, with Patriots guard Logan Mankins suffering what the team reported to be a knee injury toward the end of the first quarter.

On the play Mankins was playing left tackle and came out to put a block on Dolphins linebacker Carlos Dansby on a run play by Patriots runningback Danny Woodhead.  Dansby’s teammate, Kevin Burnett, tackled Woodhead and rolled into the back of Mankins left leg, bending his leg awkwardly and causing the veteran lineman to have to leave the game.

Considering that Mankins has been one of their toughest and most reliable guys,  the fact he came out of the game and didn’t return is obviously a concern.

There were no further reports after the game on his condition, but it’s definitely something to keep an eye on.  They have one final game next week against the Bills and Saturday’s win clinched at least a first round bye, giving him a minimum of two weeks to recover in time for their first postseason game.

With Mankins out of the game, they moved Nate Solder back to the left tackle position. However, Mankins has been invaluable at the left guard spot in the running game and his tenacity blocking downfield has been one of the things that has made them so effective.

According to the Boston Herald’s Ian Rapoport, there’s some reason to be hopeful.  He reports that Mankins wanted to come back in the game, but they wouldn’t let him.

Needless to say hopefully the injury isn’t too serious and we’ll see him return in a couple weeks.