Updated 9:01 p.m. ET on Sunday, Dec. 18
The Patriots' defense took a hit in the first quarter of Sunday's game against the Broncos when DE Andre Carter suffered a left knee injury. Carter had to be carted off the field.
Carter, an offseason free-agent acquisition, entered Sunday leading the team with 10 sacks, 13 tackles for loss and 22 QB hits. He was also stout against the run.
ESPN's Josina ANderson reported that Carter's injury is quad-related and will require surgery.
Mark Anderson replaced Carter and had two sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. DE Jermaine Cunningham is on injured reserve. The team has Shaun Ellis, Brandon Deaderick and Eric Moore at defensive end.