Patriots address lack of defensive line depth with latest signing
On Tuesday, the New England Patriots opened up both a roster spot and practice squad spot with a pair of roster moves. One of those spots has now been filled, less than 24 hours later.
According to Doug Kyed of The Boston Herald, the Patriots are signing defensive tackle Manny Jones to their practice squad. Jones, 24, had been a free agent since getting waived by the Pittsburgh Steelers during final roster cuts.
A 2022 UDFA out of Colorado State, Jones spent his first NFL season with the Arizona Cardinals. He was mainly on the practice squad, but did appear in four games. The Cardinals released him this past May and the Steelers picked him up. He spent all of training camp with Pittsburgh.
The addition of Jones comes after the Patriots saw two defensive tackles get hurt in Sunday’s win over the New York Jets. Daniel Ekaule and Davon Godchaux both left that game early. Ekuale has since been placed on IR, while there’s no update on Godchaux’s status yet.
At 6-foot-4, 290 pounds, Jones is an athletic interior rusher at the defensive tackle position. That makes him more stylistically similar to Ekuale than Godchaux, who is more of a run-stopping nose tackle.
If the Patriots need to add further depth, they still have the ability to do so. While Jones’ signing fills their last open practice squad spot, they still have a spot available on the active roster after placing Ekuale on IR.
29 former Patriots named initial nominees for Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2024
On Tuesday morning, the Pro Football Hall of Fame kicked off another induction cycle. In the first step of choosing the Class of 2024, the Hall revealed the list of modern-era nominees to be considered for the class.
This year’s initial group includes 173 players, a significant increase from the 129 initial nominees last year. That group is made up of 94 offensive players, 64 defensive players, and 17 specialists. In the coming months the selection committee will narrow this list down to a smaller group of semifinalists, followed by a group of 19 finalists. That group will then go to the final round of voting, with the official Class of 2024 – which will be between four and nine individuals – being revealed leading up to the Super Bowl in February.
Of the 173 initial nominees this year, 29 spent at least some time with the New England Patriots. That’s up from 24 last year, even though former Patriot Darrelle Revis is no longer on the list after getting inducted as part of the Class of 2023 (on his first ballot). In fact, none of the former Patriots under consideration are first-ballot candidates this year – although a few are back on the ballot after not being included in recent years.
From franchise cornerstones to guys who just came through for a cup of coffee and never even put on the uniform, here is a look at all 29 former Patriots under consideration this year. Will any become the 11th former Patriot to be enshrined in Canton?