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New England Patriots Weekend Roster Moves

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New England Patriots wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (7) runs with the ball past Pittsburgh Steelers safety Damontae Kazee (23) during the first half of an NFL football game on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023, in Pittsburgh. He was the Patriots highest graded offensive player by Pro Football Focus in Week 14 (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

The New England Patriots made a number of roster moves leading up to Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills. They resulted in one player’s season ending, another joining the 53-man roster, and two practice squad elevations.

JuJu Smith-Schuster to IR

Smith-Schuster’s first season in New England will finish on the reserve/injured list with an ankle injury. He had not played since Week 14 against Pittsburgh. Smith-Schuster had been one of the bigger disappointments for the Patriots in a disappointing season for the team as a whole. His final 2023 numbers: 29 receptions, 260 yards, and one touchdown.

JuJu Smith-Schuster became the fifteenth Patriots player on IR. He joins:

OT Calvin Anderson
CB Isaiah Bolden
WR Kendrick Bourne
DT Daniel Ekuale
CB Christian Gonzalez
CB Marcus Jones
LB Matthew Judon
OT Conor McDermott
LB Raekwon McMillan
WR Tre Nixon
OL Riley Reiff
OG Cole Strange
RB Rhamondre Stevenson
OT Tyrone Wheatley Jr.

Joshuah Bledsoe Signed to 53-Man Roster

To replace Smith-Schuster on the 53-man roster, New England signed safety Joshuah Bledsoe off their practice squad. Bledsoe was a Patriots sixth round selection in the 2021 NFL Draft out of Missouri. He spent his rookie season on injured reserve, not appearing in any NFL games. Bledsoe returned to the practice squad last season, and played in three games for New England. He has yet to play in 2023.

Bledsoe’s promotion helps provide depth with the absence of starting safety Jabrill Peppers, who was ruled out against Buffalo with a hamstring injury.

Sokol and Stueber Elevated

The New England Patriots elevated two players from the practice squad to the active roster against the Bills. TE Matt Sokol and OT Andrew Stueber received promotions. Sokol fills a need at tight end with starter Hunter Henry remaining out of action. Stueber adds needed depth at tackle. In addition to the tackles listed above on the reserve/injured list, Trent Brown was ruled out once again this weekend.

Award-winning blogger, Dan's work has also been featured on Fox Sports, Boston Metro, Barstool Sports, MLB.com, and many other outlets.

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