Crable's Release Resets The Depth Chart

LB Shawn Crable

Being a third round pick doesn't hold much water in Foxboro these days. For the second year in a row, the Patriots have released one of their recent third round picks. LB Shawn Crable, selected in the third round of the 2008 NFL Draft, was cut by the team Wednesday.

On Wednesday, the Patriots announced the signing of DB Devin McCourty, which was previously reported. The team also made the surprise announcement that LB Shawn Crable had been released.

Big things were expected out of the third year linebacker who had missed his first two seasons due to injury. Unfortunately, injuries held him back, and the team opted to part ways with him on Wednesday.

With Crable out of the mix, the Patriots have plenty of other bodies competing for a role at outside linebackers; Pierre Woods and Rob Ninkovich return to compete with rookie Jermaine Cunningham and newcomer Marques Murrell. Tully Banta-Cain appears safe at the other position with Derrick Burgess an option as an extra defensive end.

Crable hadn't recorded any stats in regular seasons games for New England during his brief two-year career in Foxboro. Considered an option as a pass-rush and cover backer on the outside, Crable's experience at Michigan could have given him a good start in New England. At 6-foot-5, 243-lbs, Crable had the height and the long arms required for the job.

On Thursday, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick addressed the move by indicating that Crable wasn't physically ready for camp. It's possible that the former third-rounder could return in the future. Adam Caplan reports that league source told FOXSports.com that Crable failed his physical

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