Patriots sign a familiar face, release RB


The New England Patriots added a familiar face to the roster on Tuesday.

The team announced it has signed defensive back Malik Gant, who originally signed with New England as a rookie free agent out of Marshall in 2019. The 24-year-old spent the season on injured reserve after suffering a leg injury in the Patriots' preseason finale vs. the New York Giants. He was released the following summer.

As a corresponding move, the Patriots have released running back Tyler Gaffney.

Gant totaled 201 tackles, two interceptions and 13 passes defensed during his time at Marshall.

Gaffney, 30, signed with the Patriots in May and had three prior stints with the team in 2014, '15, '16 and '17. He has never appeared in a regular-season NFL game.

The Patriots will host the Washington Football Team for their first preseason game Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET.