A day after the Patriots created a widespread case of head scratching by deactivating linebacker Adalius Thomas, the Pats have sent fingers back to scalps throughout the football-watching world by cutting linebacker Tully Banta-Cain.
Per a league source, the Pats cuts the veteran defender on Monday.
“New England cutting him doesn’t make sense,” the source said. “He was playing pretty well for them.”
Banta-Cain was drafted by the Patriots in 2003. He signed with the 49ers in 2007. San Fran cut him in February 2009, and he re-signed a week later with the Patriots.
He appeared in all six regular-season games, starting twice.
Because the trade deadline has not passed, Banta-Cain will not pass through waivers. However, he’ll be entitled to collect the remainder of his $620,000 base salary as termination pay, even if he signs with another team.
UPDATE: Todd Archer of the Dallas Morning News actually had this news posted a few minutes before us, so failure to give him credit for being first to the party could trigger an episode of bad karma. Archer raises the point from the perspective of whether it makes sense for the Cowboys to pursue him.