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Patriots host DT Sedrick Ellis

2012 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game

CANTON, OH - AUGUST 5: Defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis #98 of the New Orleans Saints tackles quarterback Kevin Kolb #4 of the Arizona Cardinals during first quarter of the Pro Football Hall of Fame game at Fawcett Stadium on August 5, 2012 in Canton, Ohio. Kolb was injured on the play and left the game. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

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Five years ago, the Saints traded up in the first round with New England and took defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis.

On Friday, Ellis, now an unrestricted free agent, visited the Patriots, according to Tom E. Curran of Comcast SportsNet New England.

Ellis, 27, made 70 starts in five seasons for New Orleans, recording 173 tackles and 12.5 sacks. However, there’s been little buzz about PFT’s 66th-ranked free agent.

The Patriots, who employ a 4-3 scheme, appear to be doing their due diligence on interior linemen. Field Yates of ESPN Boston reported Thursday that the club hosted Spencer Johnson, a tackle who played for Buffalo last season.

For the record, the Patriots took linebackers Jerod Mayo and Shawn Crable with the picks acquired from New Orleans. Mayo, the N0. 10 overall pick, has had four seasons of more than 100 tackles in five seasons with New England.

The Saints, meanwhile, found a gem with the fifth-rounder New England sent in the deal, taking guard Carl Nicks, who became one of the game’s best at his position and started on their Super Bowl-winning team of 2009. Nicks went on to earn a lucrative free agent deal with Tampa Bay.