The Patriots announced today that fullback Tony Fiammetta has been placed on the exempt/left squad list, meaning he cannot play for the team in 2012.
A source said Fiammetta needs to take care of a family issue and looks forward to returning to the Patriots in 2013.
Fiammetta wasn't viewed as a roster lock in 2012, as the Patriots didn't even carry a traditional fullback last season. But the team brought Fiammetta and former Denver Broncos fullback Spencer Larsen to camp, with the possibility of reintegrating the position into Josh McDaniels' attack.
Between Fiammetta, Larsen and Eric Kettani, the Patriots had worked with some two-back sets early in training camp. Fiammetta, who previously had played for the Carolina Panthers (2009-2010) and Dallas Cowboys (2011), had missed practices over the last week.