Pats Sign Safety Dewey McDonald off Waivers, Place Rufus Johnson on Reserve List

Patriots news release…

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Patriots announced today that they have claimed S Dewey McDonald off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts. McDonald was released by Indianapolis on Oct. 27, 2015. In addition, the Patriots placed LB Rufus Johnson on the Reserve/Non-Football Illness List.

    McDonald, 25, originally joined Indianapolis as a rookie free agent on May 12, 2014 out of California (Pa.) The 6-foot, 220-pounder, began his rookie season on the practice squad before being signed to the 53-man roster on Sept. 29, 2014. He played in 12 games mostly o7n special teams and finished second on the team with 13 special teams tackles. McDonald played in all three postseason games, including the AFC Championship Game against New England. He began the 2015 campaign on the practice squad but was signed to the 53-man roster and saw action vs. New Orleans on Oct. 25 before being released on Oct. 27.

    Johnson, 25, was originally drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the sixth round (183rd overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft out of Tarleton State. The 6-foot-5, 272-pounder, spent his rookie season on the New Orleans practice squad and was released by the Saints prior to the start of the 2014 regular season. Johnson signed a future contract with New England at the end of last season and made the 53-man roster out of training camp. He was inactive for five games this season and appeared in his first NFL game as a reserve in the win at Buffalo (9/20), making one tackle on defense.

The New England Patriots announced today that they have signed DB Floyd Raven, Sr. and DB Ross Ventrone to the practice squad. Ventrone spent time with the Patriots on both the practice squad and 53-man roster in 2010 and 2011. In addition, the Patriots released DB Brandon Dixon from the practice squad.

    Raven, 22, was originally signed by the Cincinnati Bengals as a rookie free agent on May 8, 2015 out of Texas A&M. The 6-foot, 202-pounder was released by the Bengals on Sept. 5, 2015. He appeared in 45 games over a four-year career at Texas A&M and finished with 88 total tackles and a 4-0 record in Bowl games.

    Ventrone, 29, began the 2015 season with Pittsburgh, seeing action in the first five games of the season on special teams before being released on Oct. 13, 2015. The 5-foot-8, 195-pounder, originally entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with New England in 2010 out of Villanova and spent time on the Patriots’ practice squad and the 53-man roster, seeing action in eight games in 2011. He was released by the Patriots at the end of training camp in 2012 and was out of football until he signed with Pittsburgh in 2013. Ventrone spent part of the 2013 and 2014 seasons on the Pittsburgh practice squad before being signed to the Steelers 53-man roster in October 2014. He has played in 22 NFL games.

    Dixon, 25, was signed by the Patriots to the practice squad on Oct. 1, 2015. He originally entered the NFL as a sixth-round draft pick (195th overall) of the New York Jets out of Missouri State in 2014. The 5-11, 203-pounder, was released by the Jets out of training camp and began his rookie season on the Tampa Bay practice squad. He was signed to the 53-man roster on Sept. 6 and played in 14 games and finished with eight tackles. Dixon was released by Tampa Bay on Sept. 4, 2015 and spent time on the practice squads of Seattle and Indianapolis.