FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - The New England Patriots announced three transactions tonight, placing veteran punter Ken Walter on injured reserve, waiving safety Guss Scott and releasing Justin Phinisee from the team's practice squad. Walter is the 13th Patriot to be placed on the injured reserve list this season and the second punter added in the past month.
Walter, 34, returned to the Patriots on Nov. 22, 2006 after Josh Miller was placed on injured reserve. In his four games, he punted 16 times for 591 yards, dropping five of those punts inside the 20 without a single touchback. He has now played in 116 career regular-season games and seven playoff games for the Carolina Panthers (1997-2000), New England Patriots (2001-03 and 2006) and Seattle Seahawks (2004). The 6-foot-1-inch, 207-pound punter has recorded 526 career punts for 20,819 yards (39.6 avg), and has placed 163 punts inside the 20-yard line with just 27 career touchbacks. Walter was originally signed by Carolina as an undrafted free agent from Kent State in the spring of 1997. He played in all 64 games over four seasons with the Panthers from 1997-2000. He was released by Carolina in the spring of 2001 and was signed as a free agent by the Patriots on Oct. 17, 2001. He played in the final 11 games of the 2001 regular season for the Patriots and appeared in all three of the team's playoff games, including Super Bowl XXXVI. That season, Walter tied his career high with a net average of 38.1 yards on his 49 punts. In 2002, Walter served as New England's punter for all 16 games and punted in 15 games in 2003. He participated in all three playoff games following the 2003 season including Super Bowl XXXVIII. Walter became a free agent following the 2003 playoffs and was signed by Seattle on Nov. 24, 2004. Walter handled the Seahawks' punting duties for the final six regular-season games of the 2004 season and also played in Seattle's one playoff contest that season. He became a free agent following the 2004 playoffs and was out of football in 2005.
Scott, 24, was drafted by the Patriots in the third round (95th overall) of the 2004 NFL Draft. The 5-foot-10-inch, 205-pound safety has played in 10 career games with two starts and has recorded 30 career tackles (23 solo). As a rookie in 2004, Scott missed the entire season due to a knee injury. Last season, the Florida product played in five games with two starts for the Patriots, recording 19 tackles (16 solo) before being placed on injured reserve on Oct. 19, 2005. Scott was with New England for its 2006 training camp, but was released on Sept. 2, 2006 and signed with the Houston Texans the following day. He played in five of the first 10 games of the 2006 season for Houston, recording 11 tackles (7 solo), before being released on Nov. 21. He was signed by the New York Jets on Nov. 23, but was released on Nov. 29 and did not appear in a game for New York. He was signed by the Patriots on Dec. 12, 2006 and recorded one defensive tackle and one special teams tackle in last week's game against Houston.
Phinisee, 23, was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the seventh round (235th overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft. The 5-foot-11-inch, 200-pound cornerback was with Tampa Bay during its 2006 training camp and was released on Aug. 29. The Oregon product was signed to the Kansas City Chiefs practice squad on Oct. 4, 2006 and was released from the practice squad on Nov. 7. He was signed to the Patriots practice squad on Dec. 12, 2006.