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Patriots release quarterback Cody Kessler, leaving depth chart with two

New England’s QB room stands with Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer.

New England Patriots Practice Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

The New England Patriots’ quarterback depth chart is down to two.

As Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported Wednesday, New England has released Cody Kessler.

Kessler, 26, joined the active roster last September and rejoined before the calendar turned to November. The former Cleveland Brown, Jacksonville Jaguar and Philadelphia Eagle served as the Patriots’ third-string option behind Tom Brady and rookie Jarrett Stidham, playing a role on the scout team while not seeing game action.

Kessler, whose NFL résumé includes 12 starts, initially entered the league at pick No. 93 overall in the 2016 draft out of USC.

His departure leaves the QB room in the hands of a recent fourth-round selection in Stidham and veteran Brian Hoyer, who re-signed for his third Patriots tour in late March after being released by the Indianapolis Colts.

Stidham took 15 snaps for New England over the course of the regular season, while Hoyer took 129 for Indianapolis.

The Patriots currently own the rights to a dozen picks as the 2020 draft draws near.