The New England Patriots waived two tight ends and signed three others on Sunday, including veteran tight end Ben Hartsock.
The Patriots also signed tight ends Steve Maneri and rookie free agent Terrence Miller.
In addition, the Patriots released three rookie free agents: running back Stephen Houston and tight ends Justin Jones and Asa Watson.
Hartsock, 34, is a veteran of 10 NFL seasons with the Indianapolis Colts (2004-06), Tennessee Titans (2006-07), Atlanta Falcons (2008), New York Jets (2009-10) and Carolina Panthers (2011-13). The 6-foot-4, 265-pounder, originally entered the NFL as a third-round draft pick (68th overall) of Indianapolis in the 2004 draft out of Ohio State. He has played in 131 NFL games with 49 starts and has 31 receptions for 312 yards and one touchdown. Last season, Hartsock played in 13 games with two starts for the Panthers but did not have any receptions.
Maneri, 26, spent the 2010 season on the New England practice squad and went to training camp with the Patriots in 2011. The 6-7, 280-pounder has also spent time with the Kansas City Chiefs (2011-12) and the Chicago Bears (2013). He spent part of the 2014 offseason with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Maneri was originally signed as a rookie free agent by the Houston Texans out of Temple in 2010 but was released and claimed off waivers by the Patriots prior to the start of the regular season. He has played in 23 NFL games with 10 starts and has registered six receptions for 52 yards. A tight end in college, Houston signed Maneri and converted him to an offensive lineman and began his career with the Patriots as an offensive lineman. Last season, Maneri played in four games with one start for Chicago before being released by the Bears on Oct. 21, 2013.
Miller, 22, was originally signed by the New York Jets as a rookie free agent out of Arizona on May 11. The 6-4, 234-pounder was released by the Jets on June 19. Miller finished his college career at Arizona with 95 receptions for 1,117 yards and three touchdowns.
Houston, 22, originally signed with the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of Indiana on May 12.
Jones, 22, originally signed with the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of East Carolina on May 12.
Watson, 24, originally signed with the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of North Carolina State on May 12.
NOTEBOOK: Former Patriots safety Steve Gregory announced his retirement on Saturday. He was in the Kansas City Chiefs’ training camp. Gregory spent two seasons with the Patriots. For his career, he had 386 tackles, seven interceptions and 27 special-teams tackles in 111 NFL regular-season games (54 starts). He also played 11 playoff games (five starts).
“Steve Gregory was a true professional and a pleasure to coach,” coach Bill Belichick said in a statement. “He was one of the most well-liked and respected players because everything he did was the right way, with a great attitude and in the best interests of the team. On behalf of the New England Patriots, we thank Steve for his contributions on and off the field and wish him our very best in the future.”