Read as much as you want on BostonGlobe.com, anywhere and anytime, for just 99¢.

NFL suspends Patriots’ Brandon Bolden

Patriot Brandon Bolden must sit out until at least Dec. 3.

FILE/BILL WIPPERT/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Patriot Brandon Bolden must sit out until at least Dec. 3.

FOXBOROUGH — Patriots running back Brandon Bolden hasn’t played since Oct. 14, leaving the game at Seattle with a knee injury that has kept him off the practice and game fields ever since.

He won’t be able to return now until Dec. 3 at the earliest, even if his knee improves. Bolden, a rookie from Mississippi, was suspended four games by the NFL on Friday for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Continue reading below

The league announced the suspension, but would not specify which substance triggered the action.

Bolden is second on the team with 234 rushing yards, and his 5.4-yard average leads the Patriots. He’s added two touchdowns, providing his team a consistent pop in the backfield.

The suspension begins immediately, which means Bolden will miss games against the Bills (Sunday), Colts (Nov. 18), Jets (Nov. 22), and Dolphins (Dec. 2).

Continue reading it below

Bolden will be eligible to return to the team Dec. 3, and would next be able to play in the Dec. 10 game against the Texans.

Bolden, who has a base salary of $390,000 this season, stands to lose $97,500, because the suspension is without pay.

Undrafted out of Ole Miss, Bolden made the team with a strong training camp. He had his best game of the season in a 52-28 Week 4 win at Buffalo, rushing for a career-high 137 yards, the only time he’s topped 100 yards. He followed that with 14 carries for 54 yards the next week against the Broncos, and had rushed for 28 yards in the Seattle game when he got hurt.

Bolden’s been inactive the past two games, and didn’t practice at all this week.

The Patriots have won two straight games without Bolden, using Stevan Ridley at running back, plus reserves Danny Woodhead and Shane Vereen.

Michael Whitmer can be reached at mwhitmer@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeWhitmer.
Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com