Hurst (ankle) has been ruled out ahead of Thursday's game against New England, Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com reports.

Hurst has been more active than the typical No. 2 tight ends with 25 targets through nine games, but that kind of involvement hasn't been nearly enough for him to attain fantasy relevance in most formats. His absence Thursday could free up some extra snaps for blocking specialist Lee Smith and some of the team's depth wide receivers, not to mention the possibility of top tight end Kyle Pitts picking up some extra work.

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