Rhamondre Stevenson cleared the NFL’s concussion protocols and the rookie is poised to be the Patriots lead back on Sunday against the Browns.
Stevenson suffered the injury in the second half of the Week 9 win over Carolina and was unable to practice during the week. He was able to pass the final phase of the five-step process on Saturday.
Damien Harris, who also was concussed in Carolina, was unable to clear the protocols and was ruled inactive. Brandon Bolden and J.J. Taylor were the other active tailbacks.
Tight end Jonnu Smith, who has been coping with a shoulder injury for the last couple of weeks, will miss first game of the season. He was replaced by second-year man Devin Asiasi, who makes his season debut.
Also inactive for the Patriots were quarterback Jarrett Stidham, offensive lineman Yasir Durant, linebacker Ronnie Perkins, and cornerback Shaun Wade.
Right tackle Trent Brown (calf) was activated for the first time since Week 1.
The Browns inactives were defensive end Takkarist McKinley, defensive tackle Sheldon Day, linebacker Tony Fields III, cornerback Greedy Williams, safety Richard LeCounte III, and receiver Ja’Marcus Bradley.