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Patriots acquire TE Michael Matthews; Trade TE Thomas; Announce 13 other transactions

With the NFL-mandatory cut-down to a 53-man roster today, the Patriots released 10 players, placed three players on injured reserve and announced two trades.

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TE Michael Matthews. AP Photo

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - With the NFL-mandatory cut-down to a 53-man roster today, the Patriots released 10 players, placed three players on injured reserve and announced two trades.

The Patriots were involved in two trades involving tight ends, acquiring TE Michael Matthews from the New York Giants for an undisclosed draft pick, while acquiring an undisclosed draft pick from the New Orleans Saints in exchange for veteran TE David Thomas.

The Patriots announced the release of the following 10 players: first-year DL Titus Adams, fourth-year T Wesley Britt, fourth-year DB Herana-Daze Jones, eighth-year LB Paris Lenon, rookie DB Jamar Love, rookie WR Terrence Nunn, fourth-year T Ryan O'Callaghan, rookie DL Darryl Richard, fifth-year TE Alex Smith and fourth-year S Ray Ventrone.

In addition, the Patriots placed three players on injured reserve: 2009 fifth-round draft pick OL George Bussey (knee), LB Shawn Crable (groin) and RB Chris Taylor (shoulder) on injured reserve.

Matthews, 6-4, 270 pounds, originally joined the Giants as a rookie free agent out of Georgia Tech. He has played in 32 regular season games with 10 starts and has played in five postseason games. Matthews has eight receptions for 54 yards during his two NFL seasons.

Thomas, 6-3, 248 pounds, was originally drafted by the Patriots in the third-round of the 2006 draft out of Texas. He started 13 of 32 games played and caught 21 passes for 261 yards and one touchdown with New England.

Adams, 6-4, 305 pounds, was signed by New England prior to the start of the 2008 training camp and spent all of last year on the New England practice squad. He was originally drafted by the New York Jets in the seventh-round of the 2006 draft out of Nebraska. He spent most of his rookie season on the practice squad of the Jets before being signed in late December to the New York Giants 53-man roster. Adams went to training camp with the Giants and Chargers in 2007 before being signed to the Cincinnati practice squad late in the season.

Britt, 6-8, 320 pounds, originally joined the New England practice squad in September of 2005 after spending training camp with the San Diego Chargers. He was drafted by San Diego in the fifth-round of the 2005 draft out of Alabama. Britt made the Patriots' 53-man roster in 2006 and has seen action in 16 games with two starts during his three seasons in New England.

Jones, 5-11, 206 pounds, joined the Patriots on July 28, 2009. He was originally signed by the Cincinnati Bengals as a rookie free agent out of Indiana in 2005. After spending his first season on the Cincinnati practice squad, Jones led the Bengals in special teams tackles in 2006 (19) and 2007 (18). He appeared in three games with the Bengals in 2008 before being waived and signing with Denver. Jones played in the final two contests of the 2008 season for the Broncos. Jones was released by Denver in June, 2009.

Lenon, 6-2, 235 pounds, joined the Patriots on May 27, 2009 as a veteran of seven NFL seasons with Green Bay (2002-05) and Detroit (2006-08). He was originally signed by Carolina as a rookie free agent out of Richmond in 2000. Lenon went to training camp in 2001 with Green Bay and Seattle before being signed to the Green Bay practice squad. He spent four seasons in Green Bay before being signed by Detroit. Lenon started all 16 games in each of his three years in Detroit and averaged 135 tackles a season.

Love, 6-0, 191 pounds, was signed by the Patriots as a rookie free agent on April 30, 2009 out of Arkansas.

Nunn, 6-0, 195 pounds, was signed by the Patriots as a rookie free agent on May 11, 2009 out of Nebraska.

O'Callaghan, 6-7, 330 pounds, was originally drafted by New England in the fifth-round of the 2006 draft out of California. During his career with the Patriots, O'Callaghan played in 26 games with seven starts. He played in a career-high 15 games in 2007. O'Callaghan spent last season on injured reserve with a shoulder injury.

Richard, 6-4, 295 pounds, was drafted by New England in the seventh-round of the 2009 draft out of Georgia Tech.

Smith, 6-4, 258 pounds, was acquired by New England from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on April 30, 2009 in exchange for a fifth-round draft pick in 2010. Smith was originally drafted by the Buccaneers in the third-round of the 2005 draft out of Stanford. He led the Buccaneers in receptions in three of his four seasons in Tampa Bay. In 58 career games, he caught 129 passes for 1,252 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Ventrone, 5-10, 200 pounds, originally joined the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of Villanova in 2005. After spending the 2005 season on the New England practice squad and the 2006 season on injured reserve, Ventrone spent part of the 2007 season on the practice squad of the New York Jets and New England before joining the Patriots' 53-man roster for the end of the regular season and postseason. He played in two regular-season games that year and two playoff games, including Super Bowl XLII. Last season, Ventrone played in 15 games and recorded six special teams tackles.

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