New England filled its 53-man roster Wednesday when they announced that linebacker Olrick Johnson was signed from the team's practice squad.
The second-year player was originally signed by the Patriots during training camp, but he was released on Aug. 27 when the final roster had to be trimmed to 53 players. Johnson was signed to the practice squad two days later and has been there since.
Johnson was with Minnesota for five games last season before being released and joining the Jets for three games. He made seven tackles in 1999, including three tackles as a reserve in New York, where he played for Bill Belichick.
The Patriots also added tight end Chris Fontenot to the practice squad, who was with the team for the season-opener.
Fontenot, 26, was released by New England on Sept. 9 after being released by Dallas on Aug. 27. He caught three passes for 29 yards during the preseason. He was signed as a free agent by the Raiders in March of 2000 and played in three games, including one start, before being released Aug. 22. He was claimed off of waivers by the Cowboys on Aug. 23 and played in one game, but did not record any catches.
The 6-foot-4-inch, 250-pound tight end was originally signed by the Miami Dolphins following the 1998 NFL draft, but was waived following training camp. He was claimed by Kansas City and placed on their practice squad two days later. He was signed onto the Philadelphia Eagles active roster from the Chiefs practice squad on Oct. 29, 1998. He played in the Eagles final five games of the regular season and caught eight passes for 90 yards. He did not play during the 1999 season after spending training camp and the preseason with Philadelphia.