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Examining the roster ties between Patriots, Bills ahead of Week 16

The past Patriots and past Bills scheduled to revisit at Gillette Stadium.

New York Jets v Buffalo Bills Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The players remain the same from when the New England Patriots visited the Buffalo Bills in November.

One who formerly worked in Orchard Park now works in Foxborough. Four who formerly worked in Foxborough, aside from offensive coordinator Brian Daboll and assistant offensive line coach Ryan Wendell, now work in Orchard Park.

But here’s a glance back through those Patriots and Bills roster ties ahead of Monday’s 8:15 p.m. ET kickoff at Gillette Stadium.

BUFFALO

Jake Kumerow, wide receiver – The stay on New England’s practice squad spanned from Oct. 26, 2017 to Nov. 9, 2017 for Kumerow. The wide receiver out of Wisconsin-Whitewater had entered the league in the years prior with the Cincinnati Bengals and spent the years following with the Green Bay Packers, with whom he caught 20 passes for 322 yards and two touchdowns. And to begin 2020, Kumerow joined the Buffalo scout team at its formation. The 28-year-old twice served as a standard elevation before signing to the 53-man roster as the calendar turned to December. Kumerow has appeared in five games as a Bill, seeing 17 snaps on offense and 95 snaps on special teams. He caught a 22-yard TD pass versus the Denver Broncos last Saturday.

Lee Smith, tight end – The regular seasons have gone on to include 131 games for Smith, who landed in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL draft. Not one of those games transpired for the war room that filled out his card at pick No. 159 overall. The 6-foot-6, 265-pound blocking tight end via Marshall was waived by the Patriots after his rookie summer and claimed by the Bills. Since then, and with a detour as an Oakland Raider, Smith has made 71 starts while accruing 62 receptions for 427 yards and nine touchdowns. He returned to Buffalo on a three-year deal in 2019. Smith, now 33, was activated from the Covid-19 reserve list in time to face New England during the previous matchup this fall.

Jordan Devey, guard – The Bills signed Devey to the practice squad of 16 after Labor Day weekend, and there the 32-year-old offensive lineman resides. Buffalo has steadily utilized one of its four protections on Devey, who has been elevated for one contest this season. Devey had played in seven contests for New England, with his first four starts among them, across the 2013 and 2014 seasons. He earned a Super Bowl XLIX ring in the process. The Patriots then traded Devey to the San Francisco 49ers in the August 2015 in exchange for ex-Miami Hurricanes tight end Asante Cleveland. The Bills mark Devey’s sixth NFL stop since going undrafted by way of Snow College and Memphis.

Corey Bojorquez, punter – Bojorquez’s 50.1-yard average leads all NFL punters this season. A long of 72 has been logged along the way. As have 14 punts that have landed inside the opposing 20 and six more that have landed in the end zone for touchbacks. The left-footed product of Cerritos College and New Mexico didn’t take the field during his undrafted 2018 preseason with the Patriots. Bojorquez instead looked on in uniform as veteran incumbent Ryan Allen handled the long snaps for all four exhibitions. But the Bills had seen enough power to put in a waiver claim as rosters reduced from 90. Monday night will check in as 24-year-old Bojorquez’s fifth career meeting with the Patriots.

NEW ENGLAND

Stephon Gilmore, cornerback – Gilmore reportedly suffered a partially torn quad last Sunday against the Miami Dolphins has been placed on injured reserve. According to Pro Football Focus, his coverage this campaign gave way to 27 completions and a pair of touchdowns. The back-to-back All-Pro and reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year stands with 13 interceptions between his regular seasons and postseasons in New England. A knee injury saw Gilmore miss the previous encounter with Buffalo, who drafted him No. 10 overall in 2012. The corner from South Carolina started 66 games while with the Bills and was named a Pro Bowler during his final tour atop the depth chart. Gilmore agreed to terms with the Patriots on a five-year pact as the 2017 league year got underway. The 30-year-old currently carries a $7 million base salary for 2021 after the organization advanced $5 million to 2020.