David Butler II-US PRESSWIRE

New England Patriots expected to add Jeremy Ebert

Wide receiver Jeremy Ebert was a member of the New England Patriots during the offseason after being drafted in the seventh-round out of Northwestern, but he was promptly cut during the 53-man roster crackdown. The 23-year-old can play in the slot and on special teams, but he was an obvious cut due to the talent at the wide receiver position (and at tight end too) so there wasn’t a need to keep him around as a pass-catcher. Something of a poor man’s Julian Edelman, Ebert struggled with a leg injury during Mini Camp and could not overcome the slow start due to a subpar preseason.

Despite an underwhelming rookie offseason overall, Ebert had some nice moments and should have been on the practice squad. He will have that opportunity now, because ESPN Boston is reporting that the Patriots are expected to sign Jeremy Ebert to the practice squad.

I like the apparent decision to bring Ebert back, because he can become a decent slot receiver (or at least a capable backup there) due to his incredibly reliable hands. He has the perfect mold of an NFL slot receiver with great speed (sub 4.4 forty) and caught nearly 175 passes for the Northwestern Wildcats in college.

Ebert is more of a developmental project for the future in the slot, but he has intriguing similarities to current solid WR Julian Edelman and could start off as a special teamer if he makes the jump from the practice squad to the 53-man. Again, I like the decision and want to note that he finished his senior year at NW with 75 catches for 1,060 yards and 11 touchdowns. He was the fourth-best wide receiver in the Big Ten behind notable wideouts A.J. Jenkins, Marvin McNutt, and B.J. Cunningham.

Jenkins was a first-rounder while both McNutt and Cunningham were both selected in the sixth round.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.

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