FOXBORO - The Patriots got their roster down to 53 Friday night, rounding out the cuts we already told you about with a few more moves of note. The most prominent move was the team putting rookie running backreturn man Jeff Demps on injured reserve, ending his season. He is not on the 53-man roster so he won't be eligible for the newly implemented IR-return rule. Demps tweaked his right leg Wednesday against the Giants. He walked to the locker room and then to the shower, albeit with a limp, so chances are slim he was damaged beyond 2012 repair. But putting the 5-7, 175-pounder on IR gives him a redshirt season in which he can learn the offense, bulk up and begin to carve a role.
In addition to the releases of Deion Branch, Brian Hoyer, James Ihedigbo and Dan Koppen, the Patriots also shipped out a few more better-known veterans: LB Niko Koutouvides, S Sergio Brown, LB Jeff Tarpinian, and S Malcolm Williams. All had special teams relevance.
DL Marcus Harrison, OL Matt Kopa, WR Jesse Holley, S Derrick Martin, FB Eric Kettani, DL Aaron Lavarias, TE Alex Silvestro, WR Kerry Taylor, and 2012 draft pick Jeremy Ebert were also let go. The team also released rookie free agent linemen Derek Dennis, Dustin Waldron, Jeremiah Warren and Darrion Weems. Tight end Tyler Urban was also released.