Hairston Gone, But Not For Long?

Rookie running back Justise Hairston was released by the New England Patriots on Friday, just a day after being designated a PUP list member. The 6-foot-1, 220-pound back out of Central Connecticut State, was dealing with a more serious injury according to senior NFL report Adam Caplan. Details inside.

According to a league source, rookie running back Justise Hairston was released by the Patriots on Friday as a move related to a technicality of the PUP list. Caplan reports that the Hairston had been nursing a hamstring injury which was significantly worse then first thought.

In order to address the time needed for Hairston to recover, the team initially placed him on the PUP list Thursday. Friday the team changed that designation to an outright release. Should the back clear waivers on Saturday, the Patriots are expected to re-sign Hairston and place him on IR for the year. The move would end Hairston's chances to play in 2007, but would keep him with the team. According to Caplan, the Patriots like Hairston and would welcome him back to the roster.

Patriots rookie running back Justise Hairston gets feedback from coach Ivan Fears at rookie minicamp. (Photo Kevin Saleeba / PatriotsInsider.com)

 

Hairston had a rough start to his tenure in New England drawing the ire of running backs coach Ivan Fears during rookie minicamp. During the OTAs and veteran minicamp, Hairston did little to distinguish himself from he rest of the backs, but that could have been due to his injury.

Hairston was the nation''s all-purpose rushing leader in 2006 with 167.9 rushing yards and 199.8 all-purpose yards per game. He set the Central Connecticut State single season school record of 1,847 yards on 277 carries. He also scored 20 touchdowns. Hairston was selected by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2007 NFL Draft (208th overall).

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