Tarpinian promoted, Tennant released

The Patriots promoted linebacker Jeff Tarpinian from the practice squad Saturday, and released center/guard Matt Tennant to make room for him, the team announced.

The promotion of Tarpinian is likely with special teams considerations in mind. The Patriots have already ruled out linebacker Tracy White (left foot) and running back Brandon Bolden (knee), two players who make significant contributions on special teams.

Last week, without White, the Patriots used four different players to account for the role that White plays on four different special teams units.

Tarpinian also adds depth at linebacker, where the Patriots also have depth questions with rookie Dont'a Hightower (hamstring) questionable. The second-year player out of Iowa made the Patriots' 53-man roster last season after joining the club as a rookie free agent. He played in seven games with one start before landing on injured reserve in late November.

Tennant, of Boston College, has now been released two different times by the Patriots since the club claimed him on waivers from the Saints on Sept. 1. He did not play a game for the team this season.

JETS' INJURIES: Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork reports that the Jets will be without nose tackle Sione Pouha, running back Bilal Powell, safety Eric Smith and nose tackle Kenrick Ellis, all of whom were listed as doubtful on the injury report, while running back Joe McKnight, listed as questionable with a high ankle sprain even though he didn't practice all week, made the trip and will be a game-time decision (link here).