FOXBORO -- Logan Mankins returned to the Patriots on Sunday, and after almost a week into his return, director of player personnel Nick Caserio had nothing but praise for the veteran offensive lineman.
"He's been able to get a few more snaps. He's kind of starting the one-on-one's. He's taken a few team snaps there yesterday. So, I mean, Logan's worked really, really hard, to get to this point. There's not more of a program guy than Logan Mankins. He's everything that we stand for. It's good to have him out there. He's working through some things, like everybody else. He's missed a lot of time, just in terms of his techniques and fundamentals. But he's played a lot of football. And hopefully each day he can gradually build on what he's doing.
"I think he's improving each day. Each day he's able to add a few more things to what we're asking him to do. So, hopefully that will continue, and we'll see what kind of workload he can handle."
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The Patriots announced three roster moves on Monday night. Two resulted in players parting ways with the team. The other opened a roster spot without a departure.
In addition to releasing both defensive tackle Terrance Knighton and center Bryan Stork, the Patriots also placed guard Tre' Jackson on the reserve/physically unable to perform list.
Jackson began training camp on PUP, and he has not practiced with the team since camp kicked off. Now that he is on the reserve/PUP, the second-year player out of Florida State will be forced to miss the first six weeks of the regular season, but he will not count against the active roster during that period.
Jackson, a fourth-round pick last year, played through knee issues at times as a rookie, seeing action in 13 games and starting in nine. He has been spotted on the practice fields this summer, but he has been limited to warm-ups and conditioning work.
In his absence, the Patriots still have depth at guard, which may have had something to do with the team's willingness to make Jackson unavailable for almost the first half of the season. Rookie Joe Thuney looks like he will be the starter at left guard, while Josh Kline could be the option at right guard to start the season. Jonathan Cooper and Shaq Mason are dealing with injuries at the moment, but they both returned to the practice field on Monday, and they also have a shot at the right guard job. Rookie sixth-rounder Ted Karras could also factor in as a reserve at either guard or center if he makes the club.
The Patriots currently have 80 players on the active roster and need to reduce that number to 75 by 4 p.m. on Tuesday.