While injuries and player activations can always change the backend of the New England Patriots’ roster, the core of the 2020 team as a whole is set as the calendar is being turned from November to December. That said, the organization is always looking to update its emergency lists or bring in some reinforcements either to bolster the depth of the 53-man roster or the practice squad.
On Friday, New England therefore brought two players in for free agency visits, according to the NFL’s official transactions wire — two players who have visited with the organization before. Defensive back J.T. Hassell visited back in September, while interior offensive lineman Ross Reynolds was brought in earlier this month. Neither man was signed to a contract back then, but the team apparently wants another look at them.
So, let’s find out a bit more.
S J.T. Hassell
Hassell did not hear his name called during the NFL’s 2019 draft and instead signed with the Cleveland Browns as an undrafted free agent. The 5-foot-11, 200-pound defensive back went on to appear in all four of the Browns’ exhibition contests and allowed four catches on five targets for 91 yards and a touchdown. Hassell was let go during final roster cutdowns, but eventually made his way back onto the team’s practice squad.
In late November, he was promoted to the active roster and subsequently appeared in four games. Playing primarily on special teams, he registered four kicking game tackles. Despite ending his rookie season on Cleveland’s 53-man team, however, Hassell was unable to carve out a role this year and was let go during roster cutdowns earlier this year — not to be brought back this time.
G Ross Reynolds
An undrafted rookie free agent in 2019, Reynolds joined the NFL when the San Francisco 49ers signed him shortly after the draft. The Iowa product, who was measured at 6-foot-4, 295 pounds upon entering the league, played in all four preseason contests that year but nevertheless had to spend his entire rookie season on the team’s practice squad.
While he did return this year, he again was unable to make the 49ers’ active roster and was released with an injury designation. Reynolds was not claimed and reverted to IR before being let go again with a settlement. It now appears that he is healthy enough to work out and play again.