New England Patriots

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 29: Linebacker Jack Cichy #48 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looks on during a game against the Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 29, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Katharine Lotze/Getty Images)

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

The Patriots made one transaction on Thursday, announcing that they claimed former Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Jack Cichy off waivers.

Tampa Bay originally drafted Cichy (pronounced “sitch-E”) in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL Draft out of Wisconsin. Cichy played 87 special teams snaps for the Bucs over the first five games of the 2020 season, totaling 15 games played in two-plus NFL seasons. A Week 5 hamstring injury kept him out until late November, before the Bucs waived him on Wednesday.

Cichy tweeted “Excited for the opportunity!” in the wake of the news.

Ja’Whaun Bentley led all Patriots linebackers with 60 defensive snaps (82 percent) in their Week 12 win over the Arizona Cardinals. Second-year linebacker Terez Hall has graduated from the practice squad to the main roster in recent weeks, averaging 32.75 defensive snaps over four games in his first action as a pro.

Rookie Josh Uche has also seen an uptick in playing time over the last three weeks. Sixth-round rookie Cassh Maluia, however, hasn’t been able to see the field outside of special teams and hasn’t played since Week 10.

MORE: Patriots add two new names to practice squad

Cichy has only played seven snaps on defense in his career. But in New England under Bill Belichick, he will have an opportunity to prove himself as a core special teamer.

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 matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.