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Huard, two others made official

Three signings were made official by New England Monday, upping the number of free agents brought in to a league-high 10 players.

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Three signings were made official by New England Monday, upping the number of free agents brought in to a league-high 10 players.

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            The signing of quarterback Damon Huard was finally made official after first being reported late last week. Released by Miami after the Dolphins brought in Ray Lucas, Huard gives New England a backup with experience. Over the last two seasons, Huard was 5-1 as a starter and 6-2 when playing more than half the game in place of Dan Marino or Jay Fiedler. Last preseason Fiedler beat Huard out for the full-time starting job.  

One of the strongest performances of Huard's career came against the Patriots on Nov. 21, 1999. New England was coming off a tough 24-17 loss on Monday Night Football to the New York Jets. Huard came in and completed 18-of-30 passes, including two touchdowns, to beat the Patriots 27-17. The loss aided a second-half tailspin by New England that saw the Patriots finish the season on a 2-6 run to wind up with a disappointing 8-8 record.

Huard is the fourth Miami player to make the trip north to New England this offseason. Linebacker and Pro Bowl special teams player Larry Izzo, cornerback Terrance Shaw and wide receiver Bert Emanuel are also expected to provide experience and depth for the Patriots, though Shaw has a chance to win a starting job.

Compton, 30, has started 86 of 104 career games in nine seasons with the Detroit Lions. The 6-6, 300-pounder has played all five offensive line positions during his career. A year ago he started all 16 games for Detroit, with nine games at center and seven at guard.

In 1999, he started 15 games, 14 at center and one at left tackle. From 1996-98, Compton served as the Lions left guard, starting 47 of 48 games. He was originally drafted in the third round of the 1993 NFL draft (68th overall) by the Lions.

Compton brings yet another veteran offensive lineman with starting experience. The Patriots now have Compton, Joe Panos, Max Lane, Joe Andruzzi, Sale Isaia and Grant Williams to go with youngsters Damien Woody, Adrian Klemm and Greg Robinson-Randall. Woody is a definite starter, while the rest provide healthy competition everywhere else. Klemm and Robinson-Randall are currently tabbed as the tackles of the future, though Compton, Lane and Williams have all started at tackle.

The third signing was wide receiver David Patten, a four-year veteran who spent 2000 with Cleveland. For his career he has 106 career kickoff returns for 2,193 yards (20.7 avg.) and one touchdown and 71 receptions for 1,006 yards (14.2 avg.) and four touchdowns as a receiver.

At 5-10 and 195 pounds, Patten is another small receiver who provides competition among the secondary receivers behind Terry Glenn and Troy Brown. Last season he started 10 of 14 games for the Browns and established career-highs with 38 receptions for 546 yards.

10252.jpg

]()

            The signing of quarterback Damon Huard was finally made official after first being reported late last week. Released by Miami after the Dolphins brought in Ray Lucas, Huard gives New England a backup with experience. Over the last two seasons, Huard was 5-1 as a starter and 6-2 when playing more than half the game in place of Dan Marino or Jay Fiedler. Last preseason Fiedler beat Huard out for the full-time starting job.  

One of the strongest performances of Huard's career came against the Patriots on Nov. 21, 1999. New England was coming off a tough 24-17 loss on Monday Night Football to the New York Jets. Huard came in and completed 18-of-30 passes, including two touchdowns, to beat the Patriots 27-17. The loss aided a second-half tailspin by New England that saw the Patriots finish the season on a 2-6 run to wind up with a disappointing 8-8 record.

Huard is the fourth Miami player to make the trip north to New England this offseason. Linebacker and Pro Bowl special teams player Larry Izzo, cornerback Terrance Shaw and wide receiver Bert Emanuel are also expected to provide experience and depth for the Patriots, though Shaw has a chance to win a starting job.

Compton, 30, has started 86 of 104 career games in nine seasons with the Detroit Lions. The 6-6, 300-pounder has played all five offensive line positions during his career. A year ago he started all 16 games for Detroit, with nine games at center and seven at guard.

In 1999, he started 15 games, 14 at center and one at left tackle. From 1996-98, Compton served as the Lions left guard, starting 47 of 48 games. He was originally drafted in the third round of the 1993 NFL draft (68th overall) by the Lions.

Compton brings yet another veteran offensive lineman with starting experience. The Patriots now have Compton, Joe Panos, Max Lane, Joe Andruzzi, Sale Isaia and Grant Williams to go with youngsters Damien Woody, Adrian Klemm and Greg Robinson-Randall. Woody is a definite starter, while the rest provide healthy competition everywhere else. Klemm and Robinson-Randall are currently tabbed as the tackles of the future, though Compton, Lane and Williams have all started at tackle.

The third signing was wide receiver David Patten, a four-year veteran who spent 2000 with Cleveland. For his career he has 106 career kickoff returns for 2,193 yards (20.7 avg.) and one touchdown and 71 receptions for 1,006 yards (14.2 avg.) and four touchdowns as a receiver.

At 5-10 and 195 pounds, Patten is another small receiver who provides competition among the secondary receivers behind Terry Glenn and Troy Brown. Last season he started 10 of 14 games for the Browns and established career-highs with 38 receptions for 546 yards.

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