The New England Patriots on Friday cut backup quarterback Brian Hoyer, according to a source, as they pare down their roster from 75 to 53 to meet Friday night’s deadline.
The move makes Ryan Mallett the backup quarterback and signals the team’s intention to head into the season with two quarterbacks instead of three. The Patriots last carried just two quarterbacks -- Tom Brady and Hoyer -- in the 2009 and 2010 seasons.
The Patriots currently do not have any other quarterbacks in camp, but they will likely consider adding a young signal caller to the practice squad.
The 26-year-old Hoyer, who has been with the Patriots since 2009 after signing as an undrafted free agent out of Michigan State, was due to make $1.9 million this season and would have hit free agency at season’s end.
Hoyer was 13 for 32 for 100 yards, with one touchdown and one interception in preseason play, while Mallet was 25 of 52 for 260 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. Hoyer played 87 snaps compared to Mallett’s 123.
Hoyer finishes his Patriots career with 13 regular seasons games played (none of them starts).