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Patriots cut Deion Branch, call up Greg Salas

New England Patriots wide receiver Deion Branch is pictured before the NFL's Super Bowl XLVI football game between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots in Indianapolis Indiana Reuters

The Patriots have made a move to get younger at wide receiver.

New England today released veteran Deion Branch and brought Greg Salas up to the 53-man roster from the practice squad, Tom Curran of CSNNE.com reports.

Salas was a 2011 fourth-round draft pick of the Rams whom the Patriots traded for in September. But the Patriots apparently didn’t think Salas was ready, because they soon cut him and re-signed Branch, then brought Salas back to the practice squad. Now that Salas has a couple months of work under his belt, he’s back on the roster and Branch is out, at least for now.

Branch, who suffered a hamstring injury and was questionable for Sunday’s game against the Colts, will be available on waivers on Monday for any team that wants him. If no team claims him, it wouldn’t be surprising for the Patriots to bring him back.

The Patriots have also released cornerback Malcolm Williams and officially added cornerback Aqib Talib to the 53-man roster.

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36 Responses to “Patriots cut Deion Branch, call up Greg Salas”
  1. cassrangers says: Nov 17, 2012 4:37 PM

    wow.. business as usual for the Pats and Branch..

  2. vikesandravens78 says: Nov 17, 2012 4:38 PM

    Vikings

  3. jason49er says: Nov 17, 2012 5:10 PM

    So Deion Branch has basically taken over Tiquan Underwood’s role on the team?

  4. jetsfaninnj says: Nov 17, 2012 5:11 PM

    Come play for the Jets!

  5. tebowthrowsaperfectonsidekick says: Nov 17, 2012 5:16 PM

    vikesandravens78 says:

    Vikings

    —————————-
    I have a hamster….

    So now that we’ve got totally irrellevant commentary out of the way…. How about a comment regarding the article?

  6. truetrue85 says: Nov 17, 2012 5:17 PM

    Doesn’t surprise me one bit. Deion Branch has been invisible since coming back to the Patriots. He’s been shut down by 3rd string corners and hasn’t been able to generate any separation.

  7. bh83 says: Nov 17, 2012 5:19 PM

    This makes me sad, are they really going to use Greg Salas at all this year? I bet he doesn’t make one catch. Branch is a very smart veteran who can still make a few catches a game. He is a very valuable asset come playoff time (fingers crossed). I don’t like this move.

  8. Patriot42 says: Nov 17, 2012 5:22 PM

    No one should feel relaxed on the Pats squad.

  9. daknight93 says: Nov 17, 2012 5:26 PM

    yep, business as usual for patriots…NFL is a production business…don’t play well, a team will release that poor product..ask Ray Edwards about being cut also.

  10. confusedfinfan says: Nov 17, 2012 5:43 PM

    Reunite Branch and Gafney in Miami. Give Tannehill a nice tandem to hit and bring their season out of the toilet…maybe.

  11. jrfrom508 says: Nov 17, 2012 5:45 PM

    Nothing but respect for Mr. Branch. Stay close bro, I’ve got a feeling he hasn’t played his last snap for NE this season.

  12. Josh says: Nov 17, 2012 5:54 PM

    The only people surprised by this are folks who never watch a Patriots game. I love Deion but I remember during the Broncos game when he finally caught a ball and pretty much the entire stadium gave him a sarcastic golf clap. He’s a good veteran to have around, but dude has lost a step. He’ll be off and on the roster rest of the year.

  13. j0esixpack says: Nov 17, 2012 6:01 PM

    Geeze, what’s wrong with fans second guessing this move.

    Branch was healthy at the beginning of the year and no one claimed him – and now he has a hamstring injury.

    This is a “shadow roster” move for the Patriots to provide some actual depth and protect a younger player from being claimed by someone else.

    With Branch being injured the probability that few teams would want to add an injured guy to the 53 man roster is low. He can stay off the roster, heal and if needed be available for late in the season or for playoff depth.

    All of that makes great strategic sense. Yet to look at some of these comments, it seems most fans think Belichick is off his rocker

  14. ndnut says: Nov 17, 2012 6:22 PM

    The mention was for the Vikings to pick him up on wavers because my team is obsessed with signing guys at the end of their career and having a legit deep threat is something fans have been calling for for a while now.

  15. nflsucker says: Nov 17, 2012 6:43 PM

    Even though he’s not the best receiver in the world, he’d instantly be at the top of the food chain for the Jets.

  16. liiiithium says: Nov 17, 2012 7:03 PM

    I think Branch had better get used to flitting between the active roster and the practice squad from now on.

  17. birdmantd says: Nov 17, 2012 7:29 PM

    I’d be surprised if he doesn’t end up in a Jets uniform in time for the Thanksgiving showdown vs. the Pats.

  18. ppc50 says: Nov 17, 2012 7:51 PM

    I would rather see Branch in Dallas than Olgetree.

  19. tigerlilac says: Nov 17, 2012 7:57 PM

    He’s hurt and can’t play. This is just Bill expanding his roster. He is risking Branch getting picked up by another team but it is a calculated risk. Salad has had time to learn the office. If there is another injury to a receiver or Bill drops a tight-end from the roster Branch will likely be back.

  20. j0esixpack says: Nov 17, 2012 8:13 PM

    Apparently Jets fans are drooling over Branch, knowing that even with a hurt hamstring he’d still be the fastest and best WR on the team

    Amazing

  21. rushmatic says: Nov 17, 2012 8:32 PM

    Excited to see what Salas can do. Branch served a purpose for the first half of this season, but it’s certainly not a purpose that a younger, smarter player can’t handle.

  22. rushmatic says: Nov 17, 2012 8:32 PM

    Branch won’t sign with the Jets. haha silly thought.

  23. finhead says: Nov 17, 2012 8:49 PM

    It’s OK, If they go to the superbowl and lose they will re-sign him the next day.

  24. elmaxoh says: Nov 17, 2012 9:40 PM

    Maybe the Dolphins could give him a chance

  25. ne4789 says: Nov 17, 2012 9:42 PM

    Branch will be back by playoff time. Unless maybe the Giants will try to grab him in spite of Jake Ballard haha!

  26. dudeicle says: Nov 17, 2012 10:03 PM

    Is the new guy fast? Welker and Branch have some good moves to get open, but the Pats really need a deep threat speedster to really open things up.

  27. spetznaz777 says: Nov 17, 2012 10:17 PM

    salas is a good possession/slot guy. dunno why the rams gave him up and kept austin pettis.

  28. lovetbrady says: Nov 17, 2012 10:54 PM

    Sighhhh, such is the Patriot Way. Thank you Deon for all your hard work.I still miss Richard Seymour, though I doubt Eli Manning does.

  29. geniusfan says: Nov 18, 2012 12:14 AM

    “All of that makes great strategic sense. Yet to look at some of these comments, it seems most fans think Belichick is off his rocker”

    Unfortunately a lot of Patriots fans don’t know that much about their own team. I love Branch for what he did for the Patriots not what he is now. He can’t run at all, his separation skills have eroded so much that he needs to consider retiring after this season. He also dropped a third down pass last week on the first drive and now he’s got a hamstring injury. For a player that already can’t separate from third string corners that’s a devastating injury to have.

    Branch and Brady have a special connection that’s his only value to the Patriots. No other team is going to sign him.

    Salas at least has upside, do I think he’ll make a real impact? Not really, but the Patriots have the luxury to tinker with their line up seeing as the AFC East race is already over. Maybe Salas will be ready by January to make a real impact. Nevertheless the time to give him reps and start getting him involved is now.

  30. capesquad says: Nov 18, 2012 12:32 AM

    rushmatic says:
    Nov 17, 2012 8:32 PM
    Excited to see what Salas can do. Branch served a purpose for the first half of this season, but it’s certainly not a purpose that a younger, smarter player can’t handle.

    Hold on “Rushmatic”…

    “younger” yes. “smarter” ?? I don’t know Salas yet, but Branch is no dummie.

  31. cannonballdookie says: Nov 18, 2012 12:41 AM

    I’m sure he’ll still want to come back to the Pats, the poor guy is brainwashed just like the rest of them, believing the Patriots are a classy organization. Still can’t believe they were able to swindle a first round pick from Seattle for a system WR like him.

  32. tiggerblood says: Nov 18, 2012 1:53 AM

    Bengals. A vet would be nice on recieving corps that has rookies and first year players. Oops forgot Mile Brown was the owner also think he should’ve put a bid on Deangelo Williams maybe he could have kick started the run game. Would’ve been a great change of pace from the putrid Law Firm.

  33. Patskrieg dot com says: Nov 18, 2012 2:03 AM

    I’ll give Salas the benefit of the doubt, but I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised to see him play in 2 or 3 games, get almost no snaps, then get cut leaving the Patriots to tread water at yet another position of need.

  34. ytsejamer1 says: Nov 18, 2012 8:07 AM

    Josh says: Nov 17, 2012 5:54 PM

    The only people surprised by this are folks who never watch a Patriots game. I love Deion but I remember during the Broncos game when he finally caught a ball and pretty much the entire stadium gave him a sarcastic golf clap. He’s a good veteran to have around, but dude has lost a step. He’ll be off and on the roster rest of the year.
    ————————

    I genuinely think that Foxborough fans (quiet as they may be) actually really like Deion Branch. As for the rest of the statement, I wholeheartedly agree. He HAS lost a a step or three and it’s too bad…he has been great player to have on your team. He’s always accountable, knows where to be, and is tougher than a lot of people give him credit for. I still think he knows where the soft spots of any defense are…he has an uncanny ability to find it.

    Unfortunately, Brady is so locked on Gronk or Welker that he’s the fourth or fifth look at this stage. It’s tough to get a lot of balls thrown your way.

    It’s also sad that he was the LAST wide receiver that New England actually identified, drafted appropriately, and developed into a very good player…yes, in 2002. (David Givens was the other project player that turned out to be good for us)

  35. crw37 says: Nov 18, 2012 11:40 AM

    I’m not surprised, but as a Patriots fan, I’ll always love Deion Branch.

  36. patsfannh says: Nov 19, 2012 11:06 AM

    I guess we know who the frontrunner is for the 2012 ‘Ross Ventrone Mr. Transaction Award’….trust me you haven’t seen the last of Branch…especially with Gronk on the shelf.

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