As the New England Patriots prepare for Sunday night's AFC Championship game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, they are looking at a rather lengthy injury report. The good news is that the players listed on it are at the highest level of things and all have a good chance of playing in the game as needed. The bad news is that there are seven players, and some of them are key contributors the Pats can't do without. If some of them don't end up playing, the chances of the Patriots repeating as NFL Champions will lessen.

New England Patriots hoping injury report doesn't stand in way of NFL Championship

Seven players on an injury report is nothing to be content with, but the Patriots aren't overly worried. For all three days of practice this week, the Patriots had 100 percent participation, even if some were limited. That is good for the team that had the best record in the NFL this season, but they have to hope that these injuries aren't overly serious or lingering.

  • WR Danny Amendola - ankle
  • WR Chris Hogan - thigh
  • WR Malcolm Mitchell - knee
  • TE Martellus Bennett - knee
  • RB Brandon Bolden - knee
  • LB Dont'a Hightower - shoulder
  • DE Jabaal Sheard - knee

All seven players are listed as "Questionable" for the Patriots and that gives them a good chance of playing against the Steelers as needed.

Obviously, the offense is dealing with a bit more as three wide receivers, one running back, and a tight end are all listed. New England hopes that Danny Amendola, Malcolm Mitchell, and Martellus Bennett are in good enough shape for Sunday.

NFL watching injury reports closely for Championship Round

The NFL always makes sure that teams take injuries seriously and list them as they arise throughout the season.

Some may think that teams would lessen the severity of an injury at this point in the season because if they win, they're heading to the Super Bowl. With the Patriots and Steelers playing in Sunday's AFC Championship, the league has been keeping a close eye on practices and which players met with trainers or not. If they did, you can be sure the NFL was watching to see if they landed on this week's injury report.