The New England Patriots on Wednesday signed veteran free agent linebacker Ramon Humber to fill the final open spot on their 53-man roster, according to multiple reports.
Kevin Duffy of the Boston Herald was the first to report the signing.
Humber is a familiar face in Foxboro, having spent the 2016 preseason with the Patriots. He was released during final cuts that year and landed with the Buffalo Bills, with whom he spent the last two and a half seasons.
The 31-year-old has been used primarily on special teams throughout his 11-year NFL career, but he started a career-high nine games at linebacker for the Bills last season, ranking third on the team with 89 tackles.
Humber slipped behind second-year pro Matt Milano on Buffalo’s depth chart this season, playing just 60 defensive snaps in nine games before being released last week.
The Patriots made a similar signing last week when they brought in former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Albert McClellan, who also had made his greatest contributions on special teams. New England has struggled mightily in kick coverage this season, ranking 29th in average kickoff return yards allowed and 31st in punt return yards allowed.
Humber, who replaced the released Nicholas Grigsby on the Patriots’ roster, was present at practice Wednesday, wearing Grigsby’s old No. 50.
The Patriots are off this weekend before returning to action against the New York Jets next Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty.USA TODAY Sports Images