Patriots Release Veteran Lineman to Make Room for Next Move

Getty Bill Belichick

There could be a notable shuffle taking place on the New England Patriots‘ roster over the next few days. The team is on a three-game win streak, but they are also battling a rash of injuries at running back and cornerback. Because of the need to fill some voids, the Patriots are having to make some cuts at other positions.

On Monday, November 8, the Patriots released veteran offensive lineman James Ferentz. While the Patriots didn’t immediately add a player to fill the spot vacated by Ferentz’s departure, the belief is that a move is coming soon.

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Zack Cox of NESN wrote:

How will the Patriots fill that vacancy? There are a few possibilities. New England could choose to activate either quarterback Jarrett Stidham or defensive tackle Byron Cowart from the physically unable to perform list. Both returned to practice three weeks ago and would revert to season-ending PUP if not added to the 53-man roster by Wednesday. Offensive tackle Trent Brown and outside linebacker Chase Winovich both are eligible to come off injured reserve. Brown has been eligible to return for two weeks but has yet to begin practicing. Winovich can return this week.

There are several options for the Patriots, but Bill Belichick and Co. must gauge which areas of the team need reinforcements, and what needs to be in place to defeat the Cleveland Browns.

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What Position is in the Most Need on the Patriots Roster?

Specifically for Week 10, the running back position might be the thinnest. Assuming the Patriots have J.J. Taylor active, New England might only have the second-year pro and Brandon Bolden healthy.

That’s less than ideal, although there is a chance they could use tight end Jonnu Smith or even fullback Jakob Johnson in the backfield. Still, without Harris and Stephenson, the Patriots biggest hole against the Browns could be at running back.

Also, don’t rule out the possibility of the Patriots signing Odell Beckham Jr. I’d still list it as a long shot, but he should be available for the sort of bargain deal the Patriots would normally be attracted to midseason.

Patriots Roster Move Prediction Ahead of Week 10 Vs. Browns 

New England would probably love to activate Trent Brown. If he’s available and ready, that’s probably at least one of the moves the team will make. If not, keep an eye on Chase Winovich or Byron Cowart. Those two are more likely to be needed this season than any of the other players mentioned.

Here is a look at the remainder of the Patriots’ 2021 schedule as well as the results from the games in the first nine weeks of the season.

New England Patriots (5-4) 2021 Regular Season Schedule

  • Week 1 – vs. Miami Dolphins 17, New England Patriots 16  
  • Week 2 – New England Patriots 25, at New York Jets 6
  • Week 3 – New Orleans Saints 28, New England Patriots 13
  • Week 4 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers 19, New England Patriots 17
  • Week 5 – New England Patriots 25, at Houston Texans 22
  • Week 6 – Dallas Cowboys 35, New England Patriots 29 – OT
  • Week 7 – New England Patriots 54, New York Jets 13
  • Week 8 – New England Patriots 27, Los Angeles Chargers 24
  • Week 9 – New England Patriots 24, at Carolina Panthers 6 
  • Week 10 – Cleveland Browns at 1 pm ET – CBS – November 14
  • Week 11 – at Atlanta Falcons at 8:20 pm ET – FOX/NFL Network/Amazon – November 18
  • Week 12 – Tennessee Titans at 1 pm ET – CBS – November 28
  • Week 13 – at Buffalo Bills at 8:15 pm ET – ESPN – December 6
  • Week 14 – Bye Week 
  • Week 15 – at Indianapolis Colts Time TBA – December 18
  • Week 16 – Jacksonville Jaguars at 1 pm ET – CBS – January 2
  • Week 17 – at Miami Dolphins at 1 pm ET – CBS – January 9

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