New England Patriots

The Patriots used a fourth-round pick on Rhamondre Stevenson, but given their history of ‘redshirting’ running backs, they still may be a player short at the position with Rex Burkhead remaining unsigned. Burkhead’s future is unclear as he continues to recover from a severe knee injury, so the team could look to Duke Johnson, who would bring a similar skill set and veteran presence.

The Patriots continue to round out their roster with OTAs around the corner. On Tuesday afternoon, the team waived interior offensive lineman Najee Toran, as first reported by ESPN’s Mike Reiss.

Toran joined the Patriots in 2019, spending that season on the practice squad. He then opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19. Before coming to New England he spent his rookie season with the San Francisco 49ers, bouncing between the practice squad and active roster but not playing in a game.

This move comes the day after the Patriots added two veteran interior offensive linemen via free agency in James Ferentz and Alex Redmond. Ferentz, Redmond, Ted Karras and Marcus Martin will compete in camp for the backup interior offensive line spots behind center David Andrews and guards Shaq Mason and Michael Onwenu. Sixth-round draft pick William Sherman was primarily a tackle in college, but is expected to get some reps inside as well.

In addition to waiving Toran, the Patriots signings of Brian Hoyer and sixth-round draft pick Joshuah Bledsoe became official on Friday, according to the team. With those moves, the team now has 87 players on the 90-man roster. That includes Patrick Chung, whose retirement hasn’t been made official yet.

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Alex Barth is a writer and 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. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.