Patriots choose their kicker for Week 1 vs. Dolphins

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By Matt Dolloff,

The Patriots are promoting kicker Nick Folk to the main roster for Sunday's Week 1 opener against the Miami Dolphins, as reported by ESPN's Mike Reiss.

According to Reiss, the Pats are also placing wide receiver/punt returner Gunner Olszewski on injured reserve. Under modified NFL rules for the 2020 season, Olszewski can be eligible to return after missing three weeks.

Rules also state that teams can promote two players per week from the practice squad to the main roster, effectively increasing it from 53 players to 55. They can send players back to the practice squad twice without placing them on waivers. Rookie kicker Justin Rohrwasser will remain on the practice squad for Week 1.

The Patriots also continued to shuffle the practice squad roster. They released offensive lineman Corey Levin and are replacing him with Caleb Benenoch, per Reiss. Benenoch spent a brief time with the Patriots in 2019. They also reportedly hosted OLs James Ferentz and Jordan Roos for tryouts. Ferentz played 15 games for the Pats last season, starting one at center and another at right guard.

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According to the report, the Patriots are additionally elevating defensive tackle Xavier Williams to the main roster for Sunday's game. New England enters the season with thin depth on the defensive line, especially after placing free-agent signing Beau Allen on IR.

Most notably, Folk has been chosen as the Patriots' kicker for Week 1. He went 14-for-17 on field goal attempts for the Pats last season, and 12-for-12 on extra points. Rohrwasser's development will be something to monitor as the season progresses.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 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 protected].