New England Patriots

Aug 28, 2020; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Arizona Cardinals tight end Dylan Cantrell during Red & White Practice at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

By Matt Dolloff,

The Patriots reportedly hosted free-agent tight end Dylan Cantrell for a COVID-19 test with the intention of eventually holding a workout. ESPN’s Mike Reiss was first to report the news Friday.

Standing at 6-foot-3 and 240 pounds, Cantrell played four years as a wide receiver at Texas Tech. He caught 158 passes for 1,873 yards and 18 touchdowns from 2013-17. The Chargers drafted Cantrell in the sixth round of the 2018 draft, but Cantrell spent the whole season on injured reserve. He became a free agent in 2020 then joined the Cardinals with the intention of moving to tight end, but was released from the practice squad in September.

Cantrell would typically represent an addition to the Patriots’ “emergency list” at the tight end position. But the team may be in that situation currently, as all four tight ends on the roster and practice squad are dealing with injuries.

The Patriots don't have a single tight end who is not dealing with some kind of injury. (Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)

The Patriots don’t have a single tight end who is not dealing with some kind of injury. (Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)

Rookies Devin Asiasi and Jake Burt (practice squad) are both on injured reserve. Meanwhile, Ryan Izzo (hamstring) and Dalton Keene (knee) are both on the Week 9 injury report ahead of Monday’s game against the Jets.

Cantrell could come in as an emergency tight end eventually, but it’s unlikely that could happen this week. So there’s a chance that the Patriots go into Monday’s game with literally zero tight ends against the Jets.

MORE: Patriots could end up with zero tight ends against Jets

They do have an in-house emergency option with Rashod Berry, who played tight end at Ohio State. However, Berry has mainly practiced with the Patriots as a defensive end. The tight end position, meanwhile, is certainly one to monitor in the coming days. We’ll keep you updated with the Patriots’ roster moves as they come in.

Patriots Podcasts

I talked Patriots with Alex Barth and Ty Anderson of earlier this week on our podcasts. Have a listen below.

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

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