BOSTON (CBS) — With a thinning receiving corps, the Patriots have made a move to potentially help boost depth at the position.

Wide receiver Riley McCarron joined the Patriots at practice on Friday, as first reported by ESPN’s Mike Reiss. McCarron will be joining the Patriots’ practice squad, also first reported by Reiss.

McCarron, 24, is in his first NFL season after he caught 42 passes for 517 yards and four touchdowns in his senior season at Iowa. He also returned seven punts for 148 yards, breaking one for a touchdown.

He went undrafted in April, but his impressive workout at Iowa’s pro day earned him a look from the Texans on their practice squad, but the team released him earlier this month.

Texans head coach Bill O’Brien described McCarron as “the spitting image of [Wes] Welker, wearing number 83 and all.” O’Brien added: “He’s smart and tough.”

The Patriots lost star receiver Julian Edelman to a season-ending injury during the preseason. Danny Amendola suffered a concussion and a knee injury in the Patriots’ Week 1 win, and Chris Hogan suffered a knee injury in Week 2, as did Phillip Dorsett.


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