In addition, the Patriots announced today the signing of seven players to the practice squad: OL Thomas Austin, FB Eric Kettani, WR Sam Kirkland, OL Matt Kopa, TE Alex Silvestro, LB Jeff Tarpinian and DB Malcolm Williams.
Salas, 24, was drafted by St. Louis in the fourth round (112th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft out of Hawaii. The 6-foot-1, 209-pounder played in six games for the Rams last season and finished with 27 receptions for 269 yards. His season was limited to six games due to a leg injury.
Tennant, 25, is a veteran of two NFL seasons with the New Orleans Saints. The 6-foot-4, 300-pounder was drafted by the Saints in the fifth round (158th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft out of Boston College. He has played in 28 NFL games as the Saints primary backup at center and guard. Last season, he played in 12 regular season games and both postseason games. Tennant was released by the Saints on Aug. 31, 2012.
Carpenter, 29, is a veteran of six NFL seasons with Dallas (2006-09), Miami (2010) and Detroit (2010-11). He joined the Patriots as an unrestricted free agent from Detroit on April 5, 2012. The 6-2, 250-pounder was originally drafted in the first round (18th overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft by Dallas out of Ohio State. He has played in 89 NFL games with 10 starts and has accumulated 165 total tackles, one interception that he returned for a touchdown, 3.5 sacks, five passes defensed and one fumble recovery. Last season, Carpenter played in 16 games with three starts for the Lions and recorded 29 total tackles and his first career interception at Dallas on Oct. 2 and returned it 34 yards for a touchdown.
2012 PRACTICE SQUAD PLAYERS
Austin, 25, was originally signed by Minnesota as a rookie free agent on April 24, 2010 out of Clemson. The 6-foot-4, 310-pounder was waived by Minnesota on Sept. 4 and joined the New England practice squad on Sept. 29. He was released by the Patriots prior to the start of the regular season last year and claimed off waivers by Houston, where he played in three games. Austin was released by Houston on Aug. 26, 2012.
Kettani, 25, spent the first month of the 2011 season on the New England practice squad before being released on Oct. 7 due to his military commitment. Kettani, 5-11, 235 pounds, originally was signed by the Patriots as a rookie free agent on May 4, 2009 out of Navy and was placed on the reserve military list on July 23, 2009. He was activated from the reserve military list on July 28, 2011. After being released after training camp last summer, Kettani was signed to the practice squad.
Kirkland, 23, went to training camp with Washington after joining the team as a rookie free agent out of Kent State. The 6-foot, 190-pounder was released by the Redskins on Aug. 27, 2012. He finished his college career with 113 receptions for 1,103 yards and 1,856 all-purpose yards.
Kopa, 25, spent the 2011 season on the New England practice squad after being released by the Miami Dolphins after training camp. Originally signed by the San Francisco 49ers as a rookie free agent out of Stanford on June 8, 2010, the 6-foot-6, 310-pound offensive lineman started the year on the practice squad before being signed to the 53-man roster by Miami on Nov. 9, 2010. He was inactive for the final eight games with the Dolphins.
Silvestro, 23, originally joined the Patriots a rookie free agent defensive lineman from Rutgers in 2011. The 6-foot-3, 260-pounder, spent the majority of his rookie season on the New England practice squad. He was signed to the 53-man roster prior to the Patriots game vs. Miami and played in a reserve role, finishing with two total tackles. Silvestro returned to the practice squad before being signed to the 53-man roster the day before the Super Bowl. He was active but did not play in the game. Silvestro converted to tight end in the offseason.
Tarpinian, 24, made the New England 53-man roster last season after joining the team as a rookie free agent out of Iowa. The 6-foot-3, 240-pounder played in seven games with one start and finished with four defensive tackles and eight special teams tackles. He was placed on injured reserve with a head injury on Nov. 24, 2011.
Williams, 24, was selected by the Patriots in the seventh round of the 2011 NFL Draft with the 219th selection overall. Williams, 5-11, 200 pounds, originally signed with Oklahoma but ended up at Trinity Community College before going to Texas Christian University for the 2009 and 2010 seasons. He rotated between the 53-man roster and the practice squad following his original release after training camp. Williams played in two regular season games and all three postseason games, including Super Bowl XLVI.