The New England Patriots released DT Anthony Johnson from the active roster on Monday and the team plans on signing Johnson back to the practice squad, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss.
DT Anthony Johnson is re-signing to the Patriots practice squad.— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) October 25, 2016
Johnson served as depth on the defensive line as DT Vincent Valentine (back) and DT Woodrow Hamilton (shoulder) have been battling minor injuries. Johnson is a smaller defensive tackle that primarily plays on passing downs, so he went out of his comfort zone to help the team.
The release of Johnson is a good sign for the returned health of Valentine and Hamilton- and with the Bills power rushing attack on Sunday, they’ll be needed.
The Patriots already have 10 players on the practice squad after signing S Shamiel Gary and will have to make a corresponding move to free up space.
New England could use an extra tight end to fill the open spot on the team after trading AJ Derby to the Broncos, so perhaps FB Glenn Gronkowski could receive a promotion to the active roster, allowing Johnson to slide in on the practice squad.