FOXBORO (CBS) – The Patriots released cornerback Darius Butler on Tuesday, just days before the NFL season.

Butler was drafted in the second round out of Connecticut in 2009 and registered three interceptions his first year in the league.

In 2010, however, many felt Butler’s play regressed as he was surpassed on the depth chart by Devin McCourty and Kyle Arrington. He finished with 23 total tackles and zero interceptions last season.

Butler sent out a Tweet thanking fans for his time in New England.

In a corresponding roster move, the Patriots reportedly signed tight end Dan Gronkowsi, the older brother of Pats tight end Rob Gronkowski. Dan was cut by the Broncos on Saturday.

The 26-year-old is considered a blocking tight end, and will be the team’s third tight end behind his brother Rob and Aaron Hernandez.

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