According to a report from the Boston Globe's Jim McBride, the Patriots have cut nine more players after releasing veteran Lenzy Pipkins on Saturday to get to their roster to 80 players, plus fullback Jakob Johnson who is once again under the international exemption. It was a decisive move to get the roster in order before players begin reporting for Covid testing on Monday.
Among those cut are seven undrafted rookies -- quarterbacks J'Mar Smith and Brian Lewerke, receivers Isaiah Zuber, Sean Riley and Will Hastings, linebacker Kyahva Tezino and defensive tackle Courtney Wallace -- along with second-year safeties Malik Gant and Adarius Pickett.
Under the NFL and NFLPA's agreement for the 2020 season, teams could stay at 90 until August 16 or choose to immediately cut down to 80 so that they can have full team workouts. Apparently, the Patriots valued having everyone together over having an extra ten players for the few weeks before pads come on.
The team now has eight remaining undrafted rookies -- receiver Jeff Thomas, running back J.J. Taylor, tight ends Jake Burt and Rashod Berry, defensive linemen Nick Coe and Bill Murray, linebacker De'Jon "Scoota" Harris and cornerback Myles Bryant. Thomas and Taylor in particular will have a chance to make some splash plays in training camp, while the three front-seven defenders Harris, Murray and Coe could carve out a roster spot as the unit goes through some transition and needs some young depth.
Now down to 80, the team can focus on getting a smaller group through testing and into small group strength and conditioning sessions and won't have to worry about another round of cuts until the end of camp.