FOXBORO -- The New England Patriots were forced to make the decision to shut down promising tight end David Thomas due to a nagging foot injury. The second year pro out of Texas, will miss the rest of the season after being placed on Reserve/injured by New England on Wednesday. To replace Thomas, the team re-signed veteran tight end Marcellus Rivers.
Rivers is a fifth-year pro who was with the Patriots during their training camp when the team suffered a rash of injuries to their tight ends Kyle Brady, Ben Watson and Thomas. At one point Rivers along with former free agent Brian Jones were the only active tight ends at practice for the team during camp.
The 6-foot-4, 250-pound Rivers has spent time with the New York Giants (2001-04) and the Houston Texans (2005). He spent time with both the Oakland Raiders and the New Orleans Saints in 2006, but did not appear in any games. Terms of Rivers deal were not released.
Thomas surrendered a foot injury during the teams off-season workout program early in 2007. He struggled to return to the active roster, missing the teams OTAs and the Patriots training camp.
He was drafted by the Patriots in the third round of the 2006 NFL Draft (86th overall) The 6-foot-3-inch, 248-pound Texas product appeared in two games for the Patriots this season and recorded one reception for 9 yards. He appeared in 15 games for the Patriots in 2006 managing 11 receptions for 159 yards (14.5 avg.) and one touchdown.