Roster Moves Official
The New England Patriots announced the following moves with players on Saturday:
Cuts: Released S Ray Ventrone, waived DL Titus Adams, released OT Wesley Britt, released S Herana-Daze Jones, released MLB/ILB Paris Lenon, waived DB Jamar Love, waived WR Terrence Nunn, waived OT Ryan O'Callaghan, waived DL Darryl Richard, released TE Alex Smith,
I/R List: The team placed OL George Bussey, OLB Shawn Crable and RB Chris Taylor on IR,
Trades: TE David Thomas to New Orleans Saints for 2011 seventh-round pick, acquired TE Michael Matthews for a conditional draft pick,
Another Lost Season for Crable
When the Patriots selected linebacker Shawn Crable out of Michgan in the third round (78th overall) of the 2008 NFL Draft, the feeling in New England was the team is finally addressing the need to add youth to the linebacker position. Although the team had undrafted rookies Vince Redd and Gary Guyton on the roster, the majority of the unit consisted of near 20-year olds; Tedy Bruschi, Mike Crabel, Adalius Thomas, Larry Izzo, even Junior Seau.
Unfortunately, Crable was sidelined his rookie season due to a shin injury. He was placed on the team's reserve/injured list midway through the year. This year, Crable has been hobbled by a groin injury and has had his season cut short again, landing on the reserve/ injured list for the second consecutive year.
The Patriots could have been in a bind at the position had they banked on Crable remaining a healthy contributor as some had hoped for. He showed flashes of talent using his long frame and athletic ability in training camp and during last year's preseason. Luckily, or maybe luck had nothing to do with it, the team has plenty of depth. Both Pierre Woods and Adalius Thomas return from injuries and the team acquired three players who can play the position; Derrick Burgess, Rob Ninkovich and Tully Banta-Cain.
For Crable, it's another lost season. Maybe next year he'll get the chance to play.
Bussey A Future Starter?
When the Patriots grabbed George Bussey in the fifth round (170th overall) of the 2009 Draft, they did so with an eye toward building depth at the interior offensive line. A former walk on at Louisville, Bussey was overshadowed by teammate Eric Wood, who garnered all of the pre-draft attention.
According to NFL Scout Tom Marino, Bussey was a solid pickup by the Patriots and could become a solid player in the NFL. "He's a lot better than people realize," Marino said just after April's Draft. "He has some decent size and is an experienced run blocker."
An All Big-East Honoree in 2006, Bussey played both guard and tackle for Louisville before landing on the Outland Trophy watch list for best interior lineman his senior year.
Taylor's Shoulder An Issue
RB Chris Taylor landed on the team's reserve/Injured list after getting hurt in last Thursday night's game against the New York Giants. He suffered the injury while returning a kickoff in the second half.
The Patriots signed Taylor as an unrestricted free agent on August 17, 2009. The 6-foot, 224-pound back began his pro career with the Texans as an undrafted rookie. He spent the past three seasons in Houston.
Although Taylor was a candidate for the waiver wire during roster cuts, he could be a consideration for the future. Charlie Bernstein of BattleRedNatoin.com shared this scouting report on Taylor:
Chris Taylor is your classic short yardage back. At 6'0", 224 lbs., Taylor can make himself low at the point of contact, and can occasionally run through tacklers. Taylor looks better in practice than in games, and he really doesn't have enough speed to be considered anything more than average.
Taylor's knee injury seemed to take a toll on him, as he simply wasn't the same player afterwards and was injured again. The Texans backfield behind Steve Slaton is a whose who of washed up guys and nobody's, and Taylor wasn't extended an invite to camp this year.
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