FOXBOROUGH, Mass.- The New England Patriots signed cornerback Earthwind Moreland and wide receiver Cedric James to the team's practice squad today. The team subsequently released wide receiver Michael Jennings and cornerback Christian Morton from the practice squad. The Patriots' practice squad now stands at its limit of eight players.
Moreland, 27, spent time with the Patriots during the 2004 preseason and is a veteran of two NFL Europe campaigns. The 5-foot-10-inch, 182-pounder was signed by the Patriots on Aug. 5, 2004 and was released on Sept. 3 after playing in all four preseason contests. He spent the spring of 2004 with the Rhein Fire, starting at cornerback in all 10 contests and leading the team with 10 pass deflections. He also started every game for the Fire in 2002, earning all-NFL Europe League honors that season. The Georgia Southern product was originally signed by the Cleveland Browns as an undrafted free agent on April 16, 2000. His NFL experience has come with the Browns (2 games in 2001) and the New York Jets (1 game in 2000). He has also been a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, New Orleans Saints and Jacksonville Jaguars but did not see regular-season action with those teams.
James, 25, spent the 2004 preseason with the Dallas Cowboys after spending the entire 2003 season on the Cowboys practice squad. The 6-foot-1-inch, 197-pound wideout was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the fourth round (131st overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft. He missed his rookie season with an injury, then played in five games for the Vikings in the 2002 season, returning 10 kickoffs for 228 yards and catching a 29-yard pass. The Texas Christian product was released by the Vikings following 2003 training camp before catching on with the Cowboys practice squad for the remainder of the season.