DL Brace promoted to roster

November, 5, 2011
The Patriots have added defensive lineman Ron Brace to the 53-man roster, elevating him off the physically unable to perform list, the team announced.

Brace, a 2009 second-round pick out of Boston College, adds another option at defensive tackle in the Patriots' four-man front, joining Vince Wilfork, Kyle Love, Albert Haynesworth, Gerard Warren and Brandon Deaderick.

Haynesworth is questionable for Sunday's game against the Giants with a back injury, so Brace provides an added layer of depth. Also, with starting left end Shaun Ellis questionable with a rib injury, it makes it more likely that Deaderick will play end, thinning the depth on the interior.

The 6-foot-3, 330-pound Brace has played in 22 career games (7 starts). He played sparingly as a rookie, with the Patriots mostly working him at nose tackle in their 3-4 scheme. Last year, Brace looked more comfortable at left end in the 3-4.

Now, with the Patriots playing more 4-3 base defense, the 24-year-old Brace returns to a scheme closer to what he played at Boston College. Perhaps that sparks more production from Brace, who hasn't matched second-round expectations to this point.

The Patriots had an open roster spot after releasing safety Ross Ventrone on Thursday.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter



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