Sources: Spikes to IR for lateness, not knee

New England Patriots linebacker Brandon Spikes was placed on season-ending injured reserve partly because he was late for practice last week, league sources told ESPN.

The Patriots placed Spikes on IR on Monday, a surprising move considering the linebacker played all 16 regular-season games despite being hobbled by a knee injury for much of the year.

But Spikes was late for New England’s bye week Friday practice, which was the final straw for Patriots coach Bill Belichick, who already had fined him for multiple incidents that the linebacker believed were practically explained, according to league sources.

Spikes took to Twitter on Friday, Jan. 3, to publicly appeal for help when his car apparently was stuck in the snow.

Help !!

— brandon spikes (@BrandonSpikes55) January 3, 2014

The Patriots and Spikes mutually agreed to the IR designation as opposed to an outright release, which would have made the linebacker available to the remaining playoff teams.

The Patriots host Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts in Saturday night’s AFC divisional playoff game.

Spikes, who will be a free agent this offseason, will receive the Patriots’ playoff shares this postseason before hitting the open market on March 11.

Spikes, 26, recorded 86 tackles — the third-highest total on the team — and one interception this season, his fourth with the Patriots.

  • ESPN Senior NFL Analyst
  • Joined ESPN in 1991
  • Has covered every Super Bowl since 1979

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