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Patriots Have Decision To Make On This Defender This Week

A notable roster management deadline is on the horizon for the New England Patriots. 

Daniel Ekuale’s two-game suspension officially expires Wednesday, at which point the Patriots must decide whether to add the veteran defensive tackle to their 53-man roster. 

Ekuale has not occupied a roster spot during his suspension. To add him, the Patriots would need to remove another player via release, trade or move to injured reserve. 

The 28-year-old Ekuale spent all of last season on the Patriots’ practice squad but saw frequent game action, with New England elevating him for seven regular-season contests as well as their playoff loss in Buffalo. 

In order to put Ekuale back on the P-squad, the Patriots first would need to release him. 

Though he has been ineligible to practice or play since cutdown day, Ekuale has remained around the team during his ban, often being spotted in the locker room during open media periods. 

The Patriots’ defensive line — a strength of the team through two weeks– currently features Davon Godchaux, Lawrence Guy, Deatrich Wise, Christian Barmore, Carl Davis and rookies DaMarcus Mitchell and Sam Roberts, with Mitchell playing only on special teams and Roberts sitting out both games as a healthy scratch. New England entered Monday ranked fifth in the NFL in yards allowed per carry, tied for fifth in rushing yards allowed per game and ninth in sack rate.

Coming off a 17-14 road win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, the 1-1 Patriots will host the 1-1 Baltimore Ravens this Sunday in their home opener.

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