The roster ties between the 10-3 New England Patriots and 1-12 Cincinnati Bengals flow one direction.
No current member of the Cincinnati active roster, practice squad or injured reserve once resided on in New England’s fold. But there are some past Bengals set to revisit Paul Brown Stadium as members of the Patriots on Sunday.
Here’s a glance leading up to the 1 p.m. ET kickoff.
Rex Burkhead, running back – Burkhead’s most prolific game as a Bengal would be his final one. It saw the Nebraska product handle 27 carries and two catches against the Baltimore Ravens on New Year’s Day in 2017. Burkhead tallied 144 yards and a pair of touchdowns over the course of that audition, which went on without another eventual Patriots running back in Jeremy Hill due to injury. Cincinnati originally selected Burkhead in the sixth round of the 2013 NFL draft. His last season before reaching free agency included 13 tackles in the kicking game. The Patriots signed Burkhead to a one-year deal worth up to $3.15 million the following March, and he’d remain on a three-year, $9.75 million deal the March after. Burkhead’s stay in New England has included three Super Bowl appearances along with 1,206 yards from scrimmage, 10 touchdowns, 335 snaps on special teams and a blocked punt.
James Develin, fullback – Develin, whose neck injury sent him to injured reserve in September, made his initial NFL stop in Cincinnati in November 2010. Stops with the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgz and Florida Tuskers preceded his arrival on the Bengals’ practice squad that season. The former Brown University defensive end would reside on the Cincinnati practice squad for all of 2011, as well, before being waived at the cutdown deadline in 2012. Develin joined the New England practice squad later that week and would be elevated to the 53-man roster midway through that campaign, checking into one game. The fullback has checked into an additional 82 games over the Patriots’ regular seasons since then, earning a Pro Bowl selection in 2017, while serving as a lead blocker, tight end, split-out receiver and special-teamer. Develin rushed four touchdowns last campaign after having rushed for just one before.
Mohamed Sanu, wide receiver – The No. 83 overall pick in the 2012 draft logged four years with the Bengals before moving on to the Atlanta Falcons. Those years brought along 152 receptions for 1,793 yards with 11 touchdowns. They brought along 26 rushes for 153 yards with two more touchdowns. And they even brought along a perfect quarterback rating to go with another two touchdowns. The Patriots acquired Sanu from Atlanta this October in exchange for a 2020 second-round pick. The Rutgers product has since appeared in five games for New England while battling an ankle injury, starting three. Sanu’s stay includes 18 catches for 135 yards and one score. It’s seen the 30-year-old wideout double as New England’s punt returner.
Marshall Newhouse, offensive tackle – The Patriots mark the eighth team on Newhouse’s NFL itinerary. In March of 2014, the Bengals marked the third. Cincinnati signed the former Texas Christian offensive tackle as the new league year began. A total of 15 games and five starts followed for Newhouse with the Bengals before his contract expired. Newhouse has also been a member of the Green Bay Packers, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders, Buffalo Bills, Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints. He signed with New England this fall, and started in place of college teammate Marcus Cannon at right tackle once before starting in place of left tackle Isaiah Wynn for the eight games after.