FOXBOROUGH — Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month for November.
In three games, Jones recorded 16 tackles, 4 sacks, and 6 quarterback hits; he now has 10½ sacks for the season and 19 quarterback hits, both team highs.
He is the first Patriot since Eugene Wilson in September 2004 to receive the Defensive Player of the Month award.
“It’s a great accolade,” Jones said. “If it was up to me, I would like to be AFC [team] Defense of the Month because I couldn’t do it without those guys, the 10 guys that are out there on the field with me, like our secondary, our linebackers. They do a great job of freeing me up, holding guys up. We’re getting a lot of coverage sacks.
“I’m enjoying it. It’s a great accolade and congrats to our defense.”
Coach Bill Belichick praised Jones’s development since the team drafted him 21st overall out of Syracuse last year.
“I think Chandler has played much more consistently this year than last year,” said Belichick. “He did a lot of good things last year, too, but his game has come up and we’ve asked him to do more. He’s taken on more responsibilities, played in different positions, but I think he’s having a solid season.”
Houston coach Gary Kubiak, who has seen quarterback Case Kennum get sacked 13 times in his five starts, is certainly aware of Jones.
“He is extremely talented and long,” Kubiak said. “He can rush the passer, we all know that, but the thing that impressed me is he is playing the run extremely well. They’ve had some new faces inside and those type of things but continue to play very well. We are very impressed with him.
“They are tough to deal with from a protection standpoint with the many schemes and stuff, so we’ve got our work cut out for us.”
Jones’s parents, Arthur and Camille, came to visit him for the game against Denver and stayed through Wednesday. On Tuesday night, they had their family Thanksgiving dinner, cooked entirely by Camille — an impressive feat given that diabetes has left her blind and she was working in an unfamiliar kitchen.
Rookie Aaron Dobson missed practice for the first time this season Wednesday, and is dealing with a foot injury, according to the injury report. Right tackle Marcus Cannon (ankle) and tight end Michael Hoomanawanui (knee) also missed practice.
Cannon popped his head out of the trainers’ room during the open locker room period and quickly closed the door when he realized reporters were in the room, though not before one reporter saw a walking boot on his right leg.
In addition to Dobson, cornerback Marquice Cole (shin) and linebacker Chris White (back) were newcomers to the Patriots’ injury report; both were limited.
Also limited for New England: cornerback Kyle Arrington (groin), cornerback Alfonzo Dennard (knee), safety Steve Gregory (finger), tight end Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm/hamstring), and cornerback Aqib Talib (hip).
Wide receiver Danny Amendola (groin), quarterback Tom Brady (right shoulder), wide receiver Matthew Slater (wrist), linebacker Brandon Spikes (knee), and running back Shane Vereen (wrist) were listed as full participants in practice, which was held inside the Dana-Farber Field House for just the second time this season.
For the Texans, starting defensive end Antonio Smith (not injury-related), linebacker Darryl Sharpton (back), and left guard Wade Smith (knee) did not practice. Reports out of Houston indicated Smith was tending to a personal matter.
The Patriots added two players to the 53-man roster, signing tight end D.J. Williams and promoting defensive tackle Sealver Siliga off the practice squad. Williams, 25, is listed at 6 feet 2 inches, 245 pounds; he played seven games for the Jaguars this season before being released this month. He was a fifth-round pick of the Packers in 2011 after playing at Arkansas. Siliga has been with the Patriots since Oct. 23, having bounced around the league since signing with the 49ers as an undrafted rookie out of Utah in 2011. Siliga is 6-2, 325 pounds. The team also signed 6-6, 305-pound rookie offensive lineman Patrick Ford to the practice squad.
Former Patriots linebacker Jeff Tarpinian signed with Houston Oct. 28 and has played in the last three games. He started against Oakland and was credited with 16 tackles. Kubiak called Tarpinian a “very smart” player and said that he’s taken advantage of the opportunity he’s been given . . . When the Texans came to Gillette Stadium last Dec. 10, infamously wearing their custom letterman jackets, they were 11-1. Since that day, after a 42-14 drubbing at the hands of the Patriots, they’ve gone 3-12 in the regular season.