The New England Patriots are on the hunt for tight ends with dangerously shallow depth on their 53-man roster.
The Patriots plan to work out free-agent tight ends Dylan Cantrell, Charles Jones and David Wells, per the NFL transaction wire.
Ryan Izzo (hamstring) and Dalton Keene (knee) are the only tight ends currently practicing, and they’ve both been limited this week. Devin Asiasi was placed on injured reserve this week. Practice squad tight end Jake Burt is on injured reserve, as well. The Patriots also have fullback Jakob Johnson on their roster, but he’s only played sparingly at tight end this season. Patriots rookie outside linebacker Rashod Berry, who’s on the practice squad, also played tight end at Ohio State.
Cantrell, a former Texas Tech wide receiver, is the most intriguing of the bunch. The 26-year-old most recently spent training camp with the Arizona Cardinals, who bulked him up to 240 pounds and moved him to tight end. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Chargers as a wide receiver in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL Draft and was on the practice squad for most of his rookie season. He spent all of 2019 on injured reserve.
Cantrell was a workout warrior coming out of Texas Tech. He ran a 4.44-second 40-yard dash with a 1.55-second 10-yard split, 6.56-second 3-cone drill, 4.03-second short shuttle, 41-inch vertical leap and 11-feet, 3-inch broad jump at his pro day and the NFL Scouting Combine two years ago while measuring in at 6-foot-3, 226 pounds. He also bench pressed 225 pounds 18 times. He was the Patriots’ best fit based on testing numbers in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Cantrell had a productive career at Texas Tech, catching 158 passes for 1,873 yards with 18 touchdowns in four seasons. He caught 71 passes for 816 yards with seven touchdowns as a senior.
Jones, an undrafted free agent out of Tulane, has spent time with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Buffalo Bills since entering the NFL in 2019. He has one career reception for 5 yards. Jones, who’s 6-foot-3, 254 pounds, ran a 4.9-second 40-yard dash at his pro day last year.
Wells went undrafted out of San Diego State in 2019. He’s spent time with the Kansas City Chiefs. Wells, who’s 6-foot-6, 256 pounds, ran a 4.75-second 40-yard dash at the combine in 2018.