The Patriots added another veteran receiver to the mix Thursday by re-signing Dedric Ward. To make room for Ward on the roster the team placed fullback Fred McCrary on injured reserve with a leg injury.
The 5-9, 185-pound Ward had been with the Patriots throughout training camp and the preseason but was released on the team's final wave of camp cuts on Aug. 31. He signed with the Baltimore Ravens on Oct. 6 and played in three games with the team without recording a catch before being inactive in each of the last three weeks and being released on Tuesday. The seventh-year veteran has played in 91 games in his career with the Jets, Dolphins and Ravens, recording 159 receptions for 2,196 yards and 11 touchdowns. His best season came in New York in 2000 when he started all 16 games and caught 54 passes for 801 yards and three touchdowns.
With the addition of Ward, and yesterday's signing of J.J. Stokes, the Patriots now have seven wide receivers on the active roster. The two new faces join the likes of Troy Brown, Deion Branch, David Givens, Bethel Johnson and Jamin Elliott. Both Givens and Brown are listed on the injury report as questionable for this week's game against the Texans in Houston.
The 6-0, 247-pound McCrary has battled leg injuries dating back to training camp and was inactive this past Sunday against the Cowboys. He played in six games for the Patriots this season, his first in New England after joining the team as a free agent from the San Diego Chargers this offseason. He recorded just three rushes for three yards and one reception for four yards in limited action.