Factoring Kettani & Barnes into mix

March, 11, 2011
3/11/11
2:15
PM ET
When assessing the Patriots’ personnel at running back and receiver this offseason, two players can be added to the mix – Navy’s Eric Kettani and Tyree Barnes.

Both have been on the team’s reserve/military list since July 23, 2009, although their military commitment is scheduled to be completed in May, according to agent Chad Wiestling of Integrated Sports Management.

At that time, the Patriots would have the option to move Kettani and Barnes to the active roster.

Kettani (5-foot-11, 235 pounds) initially signed with the Patriots as an undrafted free agent on May 4, 2009. As a senior at Navy in 2008, he led the team with 190 carries for 982 yards and four touchdowns.

Kettani hasn’t been a stranger to the Patriots, visiting the team on Veterans Day last year. He could potentially project to a Heath Evans-type role as a running back/fullback.

Barnes (6-0, 196) also signed with the Patriots as an undrafted free agent on May 4, 2009. Barnes had 20 receptions for 400 yards and two touchdowns in his senior season at Navy in 2008. In all, the run-based Navy offense produced just 46 receptions on the season.

Both Kettani and Barnes would face long odds for a roster spot, but given the Patriots' history of undrafted players making the roster each year -- and the possibility that teams won't be able to sign rookie free agents in a lockout situation -- their status is worthy of attention.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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