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Former Patriots linebacker Kyle Van Noy signs with Chargers

The Patriots released the 31-year-old All-Decade selection in March.

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NFL: New England Patriots at Atlanta Falcons Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Ex-New England Patriots linebacker Kyle Van Noy’s next stop will be the AFC West.

Head coach Brandon Staley’s Los Angeles Chargers announced the signing of the veteran free agent on Thursday afternoon, hours after his visit was first reported by NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport.

“I am so excited to be part of the Bolt Gang,” Van Noy said in a video shared by Chargers. “Very excited to get to work. I’m ready to get to work with all the great players that we have here — and with Coach Staley. He’s amazing.”

Van Noy, 31, had been released by New England in March in a move that cleared close to $5 million against the salary cap. He started eight of his 16 games last regular season after returning to the organization on a two-year, $12 million contract following his departure from the Miami Dolphins.

The 2021 campaign brought 66 tackles, five sacks, two forced fumbles, one recovery and one interception returned for a 35-yard touchdown for Van Noy. His 810 defensive snaps ranked behind only Pro Bowl outside linebacker Matthew Judon among members of the Patriots’ front seven.

In the process, Pro Football Focus charted the 6-foot-3, 250-pound Van Noy for 27 combined quarterback pressures and a coverage grade of 84.3. He split his time between roles off the edges and off the ball.

Selected by the Detroit Lions in the second round of the 2014 NFL draft at No. 40 overall, Van Noy originally landed in Foxborough at the 2016 trade deadline. The Brigham Young product became a two-time Super Bowl champion and member of the franchise’s All-Decade team during his initial stint. Van Noy then joined former Patriots position coach Brian Flores in Miami Gardens, where he served as a team captain in 2020.

New England’s linebacker room stands with Judon, Josh Uche, Ronnie Perkins, Ja’Whaun Bentley, Cameron McGrone, Mack Wilson, Raekwon McMillan, Jahlani Tavai, Anfernee Jennings and Harvey Langi under contract.

Fellow veterans Dont’a Hightower and Jamie Collins have remained unsigned since the opening of the league year.