Patriots Plan To Release LB Chris Board

Chris Board played every game in his debut Patriots season in 2023, but he will not be retained for a second campaign with the team. New England plans to release the veteran linebacker and special teamer this week, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero.

Board was on the books for one more season, and he was due $2.4MM. Moving on will create $1.96MM in cap savings while creating a dead money charge of $938K. Waiting until after the new league year opens would allow New England to designate the former UDFA a post-June 1 release, but doing so would not change the financial elements of the move in this case.

The 28-year-old had a four-year stint with the Ravens to begin his career. Board started only two contests on defense across his 63 games in Baltimore, but he established himself as a core special teams player along the way. His subsequent deals in Detroit and New England also kept him sidelined with respect to defensive workloads, and he logged only one defensive snap with the Patriots. Board saw a career-high special teams snap share of 89%, though, and his third phase contributions will be missed.

Franchise mainstay (and special teams ace) Matthew Slater retired earlier this offseason, marking an end to his decorated career with New England. Losing Slater and Board in the same offseason will create a notable vacancy on special teams for the Patriots, a team which ranked 28th in that capacity last season in terms of DVOA. Board will now look to find a new home as he faces the possibility of playing for a third different team in as many years in 2024.

New England entered Monday with nearly $83MM in cap space, the second-most in the NFL. That figure will grow slightly once the Board release is processed. The Patriots are already a team worth watching closely with respect to free agent additions given the holes on their roster and their ability to make multiple major additions. Part of that process will involve at least a few moves aimed at re-building their special teams units with Slater and Board no longer in the fold.

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