By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Patriots are already maneuvering the end of their 53-man roster. According to Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network, they are promoting rookie linebacker Cassh Maluia off the practice squad to the main roster ahead of Sunday’s season opener.
As Pelissero described it, the Patriots “needed the roster spot through cutdown day,” meaning they intended to move someone off the initial 53-man roster to injured reserve. Based on a report by ESPN’s Field Yates, the corresponding move is expected to be defensive tackle Beau Allen moving to injured reserve. Under modified NFL rules for 2020, Allen could be activated off IR after as little as three weeks.
The Patriots can also add two players per week from the practice squad to the main roster without making a corresponding move, increasing game day rosters to as much as 55 and active players from 46 to 48. They can place any given player back on the practice squad twice without having to pass him through waivers.
Maluia, a sixth-round pick out of Wyoming, reportedly had a strong training camp based on comments by those in attendance. That made the Pats’ decision to waive him on Saturday somewhat of a surprise, but the move turned out to be merely procedural. He adds depth at inside linebacker behind team captain Ja’Whaun Bentley and rookie Josh Uche.
The Patriots will also have to use a roster spot on a kicker, having moved both of theirs to the practice squad. Bill Belichick still appears to be evaluating veteran Nick Folk and rookie Justin Rohrwasser as to whom will handle kicking duties come Sunday against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff or send him a nasty email at email@example.com.