The New England Patriots released veteran outside linebacker Bobby Carpenter, just when he was getting back on the productive trail and carving out a role for himself as a sub-package LB in passing situations. Carpenter is one of the best coverage linebackers in the NFL due to his speed, and Bill Belichick and the Patriots were the first team to correctly utilize him.
All that has gone for naught for Carpenter after the Pats released him, and this is another surprising veteran cut. He is a productive player looking to shed the “bust” label, and Carpenter is the best coverage linebacker on the team. He displayed his value in passing situations, and this is definitely a surprising cut due to his value to the team as a key reserve linebacker.
Mike Rivera and Tracy White have stayed on the Pats 53-man roster, so they will be getting a larger role after the release of Carpenter. The problem is that White is a special teams star and not much else, while Rivera is an unknown. Neither of them are nearly as good as Carpenter in coverage, and it will be interesting to see how they are utilized and how many snaps they get after this cut.
Released quarterback Brian Hoyer has passed through waivers and is now an unrestricted free agent. An, in all honesty, overrated backup, I don’t think any team in their right mind would pay him $1.927 million. The Kansas City Chiefs could be players, as they are looking for a steady backup- Hoyer can be that guy- and there is a connection between Hoyer and offensive coordinator Brian Daboll (that transcends the fact that they share the same first name). The Cleveland Browns and Green Bay Packers will likely concentrate their efforts on Mike Kafka, but they could also be players for Hoyer.
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