Patriots Sign LB Jamie Collins

Jamie Collins is set to begin a fourth stint in New England. The Patriots are expected to sign the veteran linebacker either, reports ESPN’s Mike Reiss (Twitter link). Collins’ agent has confirmed the deal. It is a practice squad agreement. 

The 32-year-old found himself on the Patriots’ radar once again last month, when he visited the team on a workout. That came weeks after he did the same with the Raiders, whose coaching staff includes a number of ex-New England personnel. Collins has elected to take the familiar route of reuniting with Bill Belichick.

A Patriots second-rounder in 2013, the Southern Mississippi alum earned Pro Bowl honors for the only time in his career two years later. By the following season, however, he was in Cleveland, where he remained until 2018. A one-year return to Foxborough earned him another lucrative free agent deal, this time from the Lions.

That contract — like his Browns one — was terminated prematurely, however. Free to rejoin the Patriots once again, Collins started two of his 10 appearances with the team last season. He made just 20 tackles in New England, a figure which fell well short of his 101 stops the previous season.

The Patriots lost veterans Kyle Van Noy and Dont’a Hightower during free agency this offseason, leaving the team thin in at the second level. Ja’Whaun Bentley has seen an increase in workload over the past two weeks, with Jahlani Tavai taking on a starter’s role during yesterday’s loss to the Packers. The team also has Raekwon McMillan and Mack Wilson available as depth at the position, so it will be interesting to see what kind of role Collins assumes for the remainder of the season.

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