Patriots win waiver claim battle for former Eagles linebacker
Special teams has been an issue for the New England Patriots this season. On Thursday, the team made a move to bolster its kick coverage units.
As first reported by ESPN’s Field Yates, the Patriots claimed linebacker Christian Elliss off waivers from the Philadelphia Eagles. Because the Patriots have a game Thursday night, the team deferred the official roster move – which will include opening a spot on the active roster – to Friday.
Yates added the Patriots weren’t the only team interested in Elliss after he was waived by the Eagles earlier this week. Five other teams put in claims – the Arizona Cardinals, Tennessee Titans, Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, and Miami Dolphins. With the second-worst record in the league, the Patriots had priority over all of them on the waiver wire.
Elliss, 24, entered the NFL as a UDFA out of Idaho in 2021. Originally signed by the Vikings, he made his pro debut with the Eagles late in the 2021 season after a stop with the San Francisco 49ers practice squad.
In total Elliss has appeared in 19 games for the Eagles over the last three seasons. The 6-foot-3, 231 pound linebacker played primarily special teams his first two seasons but has recorded a career-high 119 defensive snaps this year, in addition to his regular special teams-heavy role.
Elliss comes from a football family. He is the son of long-time NFL defensive lineman and current Utah defensive line coach Luther Elliss, and his brothers Noah and Kaden play for the Eagles and Falcons, respectively. Their younger brother Jonah currently played for their father at Utah.
The Patriots will need to make a corresponding move on Friday to get Elliss on the roster. That means waiving/releasing a player, or placing a player on IR.