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Patriots Activate RB LeGarrette Blount, Release LB Eric Martin

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After serving a one-game suspension, Blount is back on the 53-man roster.

Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

Running back LeGarrette Blount served his one-game suspension due to violating the league's substance abuse police while the New England Patriots played his former team, the Pittsburgh Steelers. With that game in the rear-view mirror, so is Blount's suspension.

According to ESPN's Field Yates, the team has activated the running back to the 53-man roster. In a corresponding move, New England released linebacker Eric Martin:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="de"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Source: the Patriots have activated RB LeGarrette Blount to the 53-man roster &amp; waived LB Eric Martin. Blount returns in Week 2.</p>&mdash; Field Yates (@FieldYates) <a href="https://twitter.com/FieldYates/status/642798186160095232">September 12, 2015</a></blockquote>

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Blount bolsters a New England rushing attack that has gained only 80 yards on 24 carries (3.3 yds/carry) against the Steelers. Dion Lewis was the team's number one runner on Thursday but with Blount back he will have to share carries, as the Patriots will likely return to a running back committee: Blount will work as the bigger back, while Lewis looks like the front runner to get snaps as the 3rd down back.

The second part of the transaction, releasing Eric Martin, further weakens the depth at the linebacker position. While Martin played exclusively as a defensive end during the preseason, he is capable of playing both on and off the line of scrimmage. The 24-year old was arguably the team's fifth option at linebacker – behind starters Dont'a Hightower, Jamie Collins, Jerod Mayo and top-backup Jonathan Freeny – but did not play on defense against Pittsburgh. He did, however, play on special teams. Martin is eligible for the practice squad.