Keith Nordstrom

Patriots 53 Man Projection (Post Week Four)

Now that the final week of the preseason is over, we are going to take a look at the Patriots and who we think should be on the 53 man roster with cuts right around the corner.

Quarterback (2) - Jimmy Garoppolo, Jacoby Brissett

Suspended - Tom Brady (four games)

Out - NONE


- Nothing is going to change here. Brissett will back-up Garoppolo as Brady sits out the first four games. Brady being suspended opens up a roster spot for the length of his suspension.

Running Back/Fullback (5) - LeGarrette Blount, James White, Brandon Bolden, D.J. Foster, James Develin

Out - Joey Iosefa, Tyler Gaffney

IR/PUP - Dion Lewis

- D.J. Foster came out and made a statement with over 100 yards receiving and over 20 yards rushing as well against the Giants. The Patriots have almost no choice as he looks like a big weapon they need to have at their arsenal. Gaffney suffered an ankle injury against New York and the severity of it is unknown. If it is serious, he could be placed on injured reserve. If Gaffney is fine, this isn't a detriment to him as Foster just played extremely well and offers a lot in the pass game. Gaffney will most likely be back on the practice squad if he is healthy.

Tight End (3) - Rob Gronkowski, Martellus Bennett, A.J. Derby

Out - Clay Harbor, Bryce Williams


- Derby and Harbor have been competing for the final tight end spot on the roster. Derby has shown enough as a "move" tight end that he deserves this spot over the veteran Harbor. Even though Derby has the eligibility to go on practice squad, it's quite clear that he is the better player and wouldn't pass through waivers anyway.

Wide Receiver (6) - Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Malcolm Mitchell, Keshawn Martin, Aaron Dobson, Matthew Slater

Out - DeAndre Carter, Devin Lucien, Chris Harper

IR/PUP - Danny Amendola

No changes from last week. Amendola appears headed to the PUP list as he hasn't practiced at all since his knee and ankle surgeries back in the off-season. If Dobson stays with the team despite the trade rumors, he will likely earn the last wide receiver spot for the Patriots.

Offensive Line (9) - Nate Solder, Marcus Cannon, LaAdrian Waddle, Joe Thuney, Josh Kline, Ted Karras, Shaq Mason, Jonathan Cooper, David Andrews

Out - Chris Barker, Jon Halapio, Cameron Fleming

IR/PUP - Sebastian Vollmer, Tre' Jackson

- Despite coming into the game as Nate Solder's replacement when he was hurt, Fleming didn't do a very good job at left tackle. Coupled with the fact that he is practice squad eligible, Fleming may be on the outside looking in. Now that Jonathan Cooper is back, the team had to find a way to keep him without sacrificing another roster spot. Fleming will probably be the top offensive lineman on the Patriots practice squad (assuming he passes waivers).

Defensive Line (8) - Malcom Brown, Alan Branch, Vincent Valentine, Chris Long, Anthony Johnson, Geneo Grissom, Jabaal Sheard, Trey Flowers 

Suspended - Rob Ninkovich (four games)

Out - Rufus Johnson, Woodrow Hamilton, Joe Vellano, Markus Kuhn


- With Ninkovich serving a four game suspension, that may actually be a good thing for both him and the Patriots. He now has four more weeks to keep getting healthier following his triceps injury. Also, it opens up a roster spot while he is recovering. Geneo Grissom wouldn't have made the roster if it hadn't been for this, so he will need to make the most of it to stay when Ninkovich is eligible to return. Anthony Johnson's solid preseason play earned him a roster spot.

Linebacker (6) - Jamie Collins, Dont'a Hightower, Jonathan Freeny, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Shea McClellin, Barkevious Mingo

Out - Kevin Snyder, Elandon Roberts


Mingo had a terrific Patriots debut as he played both defensive end and linebacker. He seemed to shine more as a linebacker as he had more momentum when the ball was snapped to accelerate past the opposing offensive line and consistently disrupt plays. Elandon Roberts fought through a leg injury last night, speaking to his toughness and work ethic, which had been highly coveted. The team loves Grugier-Hill for his hybrid linebacker/safety role and what he can bring on special teams as well. Roberts will most likely be with the Patriots on their practice squad.

Safety (6) - Devin McCourty, Patrick Chung, Duron Harmon, Jordan Richards, Nate Ebner, Brandon King

Out - Vinnie Sunseri


- Unless the Patriots decide to keep only five safeties, Jordan Richards makes the team. He hasn't done particularly well this preseason but may edge out a final spot. King and Ebner are key special teams contributors. McCourty and Chung are the starters while Harmon is a solid number three safety. This is a particularly deep position for the team.

Cornerback (5) - Malcolm Butler, Logan Ryan, Cyrus Jones, Justin Coleman, Cre'Von LeBlanc

Out - Jonathan Jones, Darryl Roberts


Unless LeBlanc's injury is serious, the fact that the Patriots kept him out is a good sign. Jones and LeBlanc had been fighting for the final spot, but Jones didn't do well last night. He gave up a touchdown in coverage against the Giants. Both have done well, but LeBlanc may have the edge here with how the Patriots kept him out last night. Jones will most likely be back with the team as a key special teams player.

Specialists (3) - Steven Gostkowski, Ryan Allen, Joe Cardona

Out - NONE


Nothing surprising here.

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