The Patriots are releasing veteran tight end Troy Niklas, a source tells Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter). They’ll replace him with on the roster with free agent wide receiver Paul Turner.
A 2014 Cardinals second-round pick, Niklas has just 19 career receptions for 203 yards. Niklas has battled injuries throughout his career, twice playing in seven or fewer games in a season. He suited up for 15 last year, however. In April, he hooked on with the Pats.
Interestingly, Pro Football Focus was much fonder of his 2017 receiving skills than when he attempted to block during running plays, grading Niklas as the second-worst run-blocking tight end in football last season. PFF, though, viewed him as a much better run-blocking presence in previous years.
Without Niklas, the Patriots tight end depth chart consists of Rob Gronkowski, Dwayne Allen, Jacob Hollister, Will Tye, Ryan Izzo, and Shane Wimann.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.