BOSTON (CBS) — At this point, nobody should be surprised by any move made by Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. Yet, every season, there’s always one roster move that catches everyone off guard.
On Tuesday, the Patriots made that move, releasing defensive lineman Jonathan Fanene. The 30-year-old was the Patriots’ biggest addition early in free agency, and the team paid big bucks up front ($3.85 million signing bonus) to acquire him.
A knee injury, however, limited Fanene, keeping him out of practice for the past two weeks and out of both of the team’s preseason games. According to a report by Ross Tucker of the NFL Network, that injury was a pre-existing condition, and the Patriots cut Fanene under “failure to disclose physical condition.” The report says the team will “likely” try to recoup the money paid to him in the signing bonus.
The Patriots also released offensive lineman Kyle Hill, who was signed as a rookie free agent on Aug. 8, and kicker Chris Koepplin.
Fanene is coming off a season with a career-high 6.5 sacks with the Bengals. In his three full seasons as a regular player, he averaged 30 tackles and four sacks per year.