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Replay: Patriots Unfiltered Thu Dec 03 | 04:00 PM - 11:59 PM

Reports: Spikes in, Chekwa out

After a one-year hiatus in Buffalo, Brandon Spikes is back in Foxborough. According to ESPN, the outspoken linebacker has inked a one-year contract with the Patriots, the club that drafted Spikes out of the University of Florida in 2010. This, after Spikes was reported to have been at Gillette Stadium recently for a free agent visit.

Given Spikes' proclivity for making inflammatory (if sometimes incoherent and not always entirely serious) public comments and posts on social media, including some strong statements about New England when he left town a year ago, it seemed unlikely that such a reunion would ever happen, let alone so soon after his departure from the Patriots.

However, with Spikes looking for work following the expiration of his one-year pact with the Bills and the Patriots needing depth at his position while Jerod Mayo (right knee) and Dont'a Hightower (right shoulder) continue recovering from significant surgeries, the match apparently seemed convenient. For some time now, Spikes has been sounding a more conciliatory tone toward his former-now-current team, which may have been his way of indicating that his comments about the Patriots last year were meant to be taken in jest. Regardless, Spikes' return helps boost a Patriots linebacker corps that certainly needed quality depth.

Meanwhile, at another position that's atrophying at an alarming rate, New England continues to do away with players. The latest cornerback to be released by the Patriots, per media reports (originally ProFootballTalk.com), is Chimdi Chekwa, the former Raider who signed with New England just this past March. While Chekwa was by no means a household name, his cutting comes as a surprise considering that Bill Belichick's Patriots have allowed starters Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner, as well as occasional starter Kyle Arrington and former draft choice Alfonzo Dennard to hit the road this offseason. 

New England's cornerback roster is loaded right now with mostly young or unproven players and has no guaranteed, sure-fire starters at either outside spot or in the slot heading into the 2015 season.

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