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Patriots sign 2 players, including a familiar face, and release a defensive back

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Will either make the team?

NFL: New York Giants at New England Patriots Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots signed two players on Monday: wide receiver Devin Lucien, per his agent, and former Houston Texans safety Eddie Pleasant, per a Texans radio host.

The signing of Lucien comes at a curious time as the Patriots look for potential trade partners for wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell. Lucien plays a similar role as Mitchell in the Patriots offense, which we know for a fact because Lucien was a Patriots seventh round pick in 2016 and spent 2016 and the summer of 2017 with New England.

Lucien will compete with Mitchell, Phillip Dorsett, Kenny Britt, and Cody Hollister for one of the team’s outside receiver roster spots.

The Patriots also swapped defensive backs, releasing free safety David Jones, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss, and signing Pleasant. Jones spent last season on the Patriots practice squad, while Pleasant is a six-year veteran of the Texans, appearing in 78 career games.

Pleasant is a strong safety, which could threaten Jordan Richards’ spot on the roster. Pleasant was a core special teams player for Houston, while also chipping in an average of 20.4 defensive snaps per game over the past three seasons. He was asked to play a role very similar to Patrick Chung in the Texans’ defense, playing some nickel defensive back and linebacker.