Patriots Place Neal On PUP, Waive 3

Stephen Neal

FOXBORO -- The New England Patriots placed offensive lineman Stephen Neal on the reserve /physically unable to perform list today. The team also placed lineman Ryan O'Callaghan on the reserve/injured list and released three players: FB Kyle Eckel, DB Jason Webster and OL Ryan Wendell.

The team's decision to place Stephen Neal on PUP gives him additional time to recover from knee and shoulder injuries. Neal had missed most of training camp, and was seen once doing drills on the lower practice field away from his teammates. He will not be eligible to return to the active roster until after week 6 of the regular season.

Ryan O'Callaghan had missed most of training camp after apparently suffering a shoulder injury. The third year veteran will miss the remainder of the season now that the team placed him on the reserve/injured list. O'Callaghan participated in 15 regular season games for the Patriots in 2007 with one start at right tackle. He participated in all three of the team's postseason contests.

To comply with league rules the Patriots released three players: FB Kyle Eckel, CB Jason Webster and OL Ryan Wendell. The moves put the team in compliance with the 75 man roster limit by the 4:00 pm deadline Tuesday.

-- FB Kyle Eckel was originally signed by New England in 2006 as an undrafted rookie free agent. He signed with the Miami Dolphins for the 2006 season after being released by New England. He was re-signed by the Patriots prior to the 2007 season. In 12 games Eckel gained 90 yards on 33 carries with a pair of touchdowns. He was also a member of the Patriots special team's unit.

-- CB Jason Webster was signed as an unrestricted free agent (Buffalo). Webster missed significant playing time in camp. He returned to the practice field this week. Webster spent time with the San Francisco 49ers (2000-03), the Atlanta Falcons (2004-06) and the Buffalo Bills (2007) before joining New England.

-- Rookie center Ryan Wendell was signed by the Patriots as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Fresno State in May 2, 2008.

Note: Each team must reduce their rosters to comply with the 53-man limit by Aug. 30, 2008. After players clear waivers, team may sign up to 8 players to the practice squad. New England's roster curently stands at 75.

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