On Thursday, the New England Patriots have freed up a spot on their 53-man roster by releasing running back Tyler Gaffney. The general consensus is that the open roster spot will be used on fellow running back Dion Lewis, who will likely be activated off PUP today.
Gaffney, in the meantime, was exposed to the waiver wire. However, he went unclaimed and has been re-signed to the Patriots’ practice squad, via Doug Kyed:
The Patriots are signing RB Tyler Gaffney to their practice squad, according to a source. Gives the team nice running back depth.
The 25-year old is in his third season with the Patriots after originally entering the league as a sixth-round pick by the Carolina Panthers in 2014. He has yet to appear in a non-preseason NFL game, though, as he had to fight with injuries his entire professional career.
His 2016 campaign started like his first two years: on injured reserve. He was waived off the list in early September, however, and after a month as a free agent, was signed to New England’s practice squad. Gaffney was promoted to the active roster prior to the team’s week 8 game against the Buffalo Bills but was not among the 46 game day actives. On Thursday, as noted above, he was released to presumably pave the way for Lewis’ return.
Gaffney returning to the practice squad gives the Patriots an experienced emergency layer of running back depth. The practice squad now stands at the 10-man limit.