The Patriots have shuffled their tight ends as their second preseason game approaches. They've signed veteran tight ends Ben Hartsock, Steve Maneri and Terrence Miller and waived rookie tight ends Justin Jones and Asa Watson.
The news was first reported by Field Yates of ESPNBoston:
Source: Patriots waived TE's Justin Jones & Asa Watson, plus RB Stephen Houston. TE's Ben Hartsock, Steve Maneri & Terrence Miller signed.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) August 10, 2014
The Patriots also released running back rookie Stephen Houston, Yates reported.
Hartsock, 34, the best known of the veteran TEs, is an 11-year veteran blocking tight end who was in Foxboro for a workout this spring. He's played for the Panthers, Jets, Falcons and Colts. He totaled 31 catches in his career.
The 6-8 Jones was a big target who had 52 catches and 12 touchdowns at East Carolina. Watson, the brother of former Pats tight end Ben Watson, played at North Carolina State.
The Patriots are searching for depth at tight end with Rob Gronkowski coming off ACL surgery and Michael Hoomanawanui limited in training camp by an injury. They have joint practices with the Eagles this week ahead of their second preseason game, Friday night at Gillette Stadium against Philadelphia.