Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Patriots add linebacker depth in trade for Casillas


The New England Patriots announced Tuesday they have acquired veteran linebacker Jonathan Casillas in a trade with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

In a corresponding move, they released offensive lineman Chris Barker.

Casillas, 27, was in his sixth NFL season with Tampa Bay after a four-year stint with the New Orleans Saints. The 6-foot-1, 227-pounder, originally entered the NFL as a rookie free agent out of Wisconsin. He has played in 55 games with 15 starts and has amassed 138 total tackles, three sacks, five passes defensed, one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries and 26 special teams tackles.

Casillas also played in four postseason games with the Saints, including Super Bowl XLIV. He played in five games with three starts for the Buccaneers in 2014 and accumulated nine total tackles.

Barker, 24, was signed from the practice squad to the 53-man roster in mid-October after a move to and from the practice squad. The 6-foot-2, 310-pounder is in his second NFL season after spending the entire 2013 season on the New England roster. Barker was claimed off waivers from the Miami Dolphins last September after originally signing with Miami as a rookie free agent out of Nevada last May.

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