FOXBORO (CBS) -- Hours before their 2017 season began, the Patriots took a hit.
Wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell, entering his second season with the team, was placed on injured reserve by the Patirots, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
The new injured reserve rules, which into place last year, does not require a team to place a designation to return on a player when placed on IR. So, it remains possible that Mitchell does play this season, but he will miss at least the first eight weeks. A new rule this year allows teams to bring back not just one but two players from IR.
The receiver caught 32 passes for 401 yards and four touchdowns in the regular season, and he caught six passes for 70 yards in the Patriots' Super Bowl LI victory.
Earlier this offseason, the Patriots lost Julian Edelman to a season-ending knee injury.
The Patriots acquired receiver Phillip Dorsett from Indianapolis in a trade last weekend.
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