BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots’ linebacking corps just got a little bit deeper. They have reportedly acquired linebacker Marquis Flowers from the Cincinnati Bengals for a seventh-round draft pick.
Jim Owczarski of the Cincinnati Enquirer first reported the trade on Tuesday. Flowers, 25, played in all 16 games for the Bengals in 2016, almost entirely on special teams. He played in all 16 games in his rookie season in 2014, but missed all of 2015 with a shoulder injury.
Flowers, who stands at 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds, was a sixth-round draft pick out of Arizona in the 2014 NFL Draft.
The Patriots also signed former Bengal Rex Burkhead earlier in the offseason. Fullback James Develin also spent the 2011 season on the Bengals practice squad.
Bill Belichick declined to confirm the trade during his Tuesday morning press conference in Foxboro, reportedly saying “If we have an announcement we’ll make it.”
Flowers played safety for two seasons at Arizona before moving to linebacker, according to the Providence Journal’s Mark Daniels.
Lee played just three defensive snaps for the Bengals in 2016 but was a core special teams player. It appears unlikely that he will make any kind of impact on the Patriots defense, but could certainly contribute to their special teams depth.