OL Welch promoted; S Ventrone released

The Patriots on Saturday announced that offensive tackle Thomas Welch has been signed to the 53-man roster from the practice squad, while safety Ross Ventrone has been released.

Welch, who was originally a seventh-round pick of the Patriots in 2010, was active for the regular season opener against the Dolphins before being released and re-signed to the practice squad. Ventrone had been spent the first two-plus weeks of the regular season on the practice squad before being promoted prior to last week's game in Buffalo.

With offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer declared out for Sunday's game against the Raiders, rookie Nate Solder will get the starting nod at right tackle. Welch will likely be active as a reserve offensive tackle.

Ventrone's release could be considered a positive sign for the health of safety Patrick Chung. He is questionable for tomorrow's game with a hand injury, but practiced every day this week after having missed last Sunday's game in Buffalo.