After multiple special teams breakdowns in Sunday's home-opening loss to the Cardinals, the Patriots announced Wednesday that they have re-signed veteran linebacker Niko Koutouvides.
The 31-year-old Koutouvides was with the team in training camp and appeared in the final 11 regular-season games last season for the club, in addition to three playoff contests. He played on all four of the core special teams units -- kickoff coverage, kickoff return, punt coverage and punt return.
The Patriots had a punt blocked in Sunday's game against the Cardinals that was a key play in the game. Two other punts were nearly blocked before that.
Koutouvides replaces first-year linebacker Mike Rivera on the roster, as Rivera had been playing on all four core special teams units over the first two weeks of the 2012 season.