The New England Patriots waived two former draft picks on Saturday.
Patriots promote Terez Hall, sign Akeem Spence to practice squad, activate Sony Michel, promote Donte Moncrief, cut Hjalte Froholdt, Derek Rivers
— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) November 21, 2020
24-year-old Froholdt was born in Denmark.
He finished high school (senior year) at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida.
Froholdt played college football at the University of Arkansas.
He was among the draft class for the 2019 NFL Draft.
Prior to that, he covered the 2019 Super Bowl between the Patriots and Rams as part of the Danish media.
A few months later, he was drafted by the Super Bowl Champion Patriots in the 4th round (118th overall).
He is only the second player from Denmark to ever be drafted in the NFL; the first was Hall-of-Fame kicker Morten Andersen.
Injured in the 2019 preseason, Froholdt has seen very little playing time leading up to being waived.
On Monday, the Houston Texans claimed Froholdt off of waivers.
Rivers spent the year following his high school graduation at Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia.
Then, he attended 3 years at Youngstown State.
He recorded 14 sacks in his senior season.
Rivers was drafted by New England in the 3rd round of the 2017 NFL Draft (83rd overall).
He spent the majority of his career in New England on injured reserve, including the 2019 Super Bowl where the Patriots defeated the Rams.
Rivers spent time on the Patriots Reserve/COVID-19 list in mid October as a high risk close contact.
The Rams claimed him off waivers on Monday morning.
Waiving the players on Saturday can divert attention because teams are focusing on their weekend games.
It is possible that Patriots were planning to sign them to the practice squad if they weren’t claimed.
The reason they waived the two players was to make room on the active roster.
Back on the Active Roster
1. Sony Michel, RB
News story: With the Patriots turning toward a power running approach in recent weeks, having a well-stocked depth chart aids that plan — so Sony Michel will be activated off IR to provide depth behind No. 1 option Damien Harris. https://t.co/CdyEcHx8xu
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) November 21, 2020
Perhaps this is the real headline for the Patriots.
Sony Michel is back.
The Patriots first-round draft pick from 2018 (31st overall) and Super Bowl Champion (2019 over the Rams) suffered a quadriceps injury on October 5, 2020.
En route to a comeback, Michel tested positive for COVID-19 and was placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 list on October 17.
In his third season, Michel has been consistent in the previous 2 seasons (2018 and 2019) rushing for nearly 1,000 yards and for 6 and 7 TDs respectively.
Though activated Saturday, Michel did not play in the Week 11 loss against the Texans.
2. Terez Hall, OL
Hall is questionable with a shoulder injury.
But he has played in 3 games this season, netting 10 solo tackles and 20 combo tackles.
New England Patriots Upcoming Schedule
The Patriots are 4-6 and in third place in the AFC East behind division leader Buffalo at 7-3 and a surging Miami team at 6-4.
Their Week 12 matchup is against the Arizona Cardinals, and they have one more meeting with each of their division rivals (Buffalo and Miami).
They have a tall hill to climb to make the playoffs, but no one counts out a Bill Belichick team even without Tom Brady.