Originally posted on Sox and Dawgs  |  Last updated 3/14/13
Earlier this week just as the NFL Free Agency period was beginning, the New England Patriots tendered restricted free agent TE Mike Hoomanawanui for $1.323 million.  The team chose the original round tender and if another team signs him to an offer sheet and New England declines to match it they would receive a 5th round draft pick for him.  Last season the 24-year-old, 6’4”, 265-lb tight end made $540,000.  He was originally drafted by the St. Louis Rams in the 2010 NFL Draft in the 5th round out of Illinois. After being cut by the Rams in September of last year Hoomanawanui signed with New England and made a positive impact starting several games when starting tight ends Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski missed time due to injuries.  The Patriots also released S Patrick Chung who had fallen out of favor with the coaching staff as the season went along losing his starting role and seeing his overall playing time diminished to just three snaps in the AFC Championship game. The team was reportedly upset with Chung over poor after the whistle penalties and his failure to take proper routes during pass coverage. After he was released he signed later that day with the Philadelphia Eagles and was reunited with his college coach from Oregon, Chip Kelley. Chung was a 2009 2nd round draft pick by the Patriots who acquired that pick in a trade with Kansas City that sent QB Matt Cassel and LB Mike Vrabel to the Chiefs. Follow Steve on Twitter @SteveMichaelsII photo credit: getty images
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