Wednesday December 17th, 2014

The New England Patriots have placed rookie defensive end Dominique Easley on injured reserve with soreness in his right knee, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports.

Easley, the No. 29 pick in the 2014 draft, played in 11 games for the Patriots this season, finishing with 10 combined tackles and one sack. He missed last week's game against the Miami Dolphins after being held out of practice all week. 

The 22-year-old tore his right ACL in September 2013 while playing in college at Florida. He previously tore his left ACL in November 2011.

During his last healthy season at Florida in 2012, he recorded 4.0 sacks, 8.5 tackles for loss and 36 combined tackles.

• BURKE: Patriots climb to No. 1 in Power Rankings

New England is tied for 10th in the league with 36.0 sacks this season. Rob Ninkovich leads the Patriots with 8.0 sacks, while Chandler Jones has 6.0 and Dont'a Hightower has 5.0.

The Patriots have won two straight and nine of their last ten games. They are 11-3 and have clinched the AFC East title. They are tied with the Denver Broncos for first place in the AFC and own the tiebreaker based on their head-to-head win at Gillette Stadium earlier this season.

The Patriots play at the New York Jets on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET before closing the regular season on Dec. 28 against the Buffalo Bills.

Report: NFL employees hand over Ray Rice records

- Paul Palladino

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