The Patriots’ partnership with Bruce Ellington ended up lasting barely a month. The defending Super Bowl champions cut the veteran wide receiver on Wednesday.
Ellington signed a one-year deal for $895K (with just $25K guaranteed), so this transaction will not be costly for the Patriots. This exit comes with an injury designation, per Mike Reiss of ESPN.com (on Twitter), helping to explain Ellington’s abrupt departure.
Ellington has bounced around the league during his five-year career but established somewhat of a steady role with the Texans. However, a long-term role has eluded him.
New England signed the slot receiver in March, adding Ellington and former Redskins pass catcher Maurice Harris. The Patriots drafted N’Keal Harry in the first round and added Demaryius Thomas, who is recovering from an Achilles tear, in April. Slot player Braxton Berrios remains on the roster after not playing as a rookie. The Patriots also signed two UDFA wideouts — Auburn’s Ryan Davis and NC State’s Jakobi Meyers, the latter a former quarterback who posted a 1,000-yard season as a senior — last week.
The Pats last year released a slew of free agent wideouts, with Jordan Matthews, Kenny Britt and Eric Decker departing before Week 1. Matthews and Decker did not play a down for the Patriots. It appears Ellington will follow that path.
After Ellington started six games for the 2017 Texans, hauling in a career-high 29 passes for 330 yards and two touchdowns, he received his walking papers — via IR release — midway through the 2018 campaign. The Lions picked Ellington up and deployed him in three games.
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