A reunion between Arrington and the Patriots in the future has not been ruled out, the source said. Arrington was scheduled to earn $3 million this season and count $4.625 million against the salary cap.
Arrington thanked the Patriots in a post on Instagram.
Want to take the moment to thank the New England Patriot organization for an incredible opportunity to be apart of such a first class franchise the last six years. Definitely want to thank the fans and New England community as well. This has been my home away from home and it's been an amazing journey. From '09-'14 you guys weren't just my teammates, you are my brothers! Always......#PatsNation
The 5-foot-10, 190-pound Arrington worked his way from practice squad player in 2009 to the team's top slot cornerback in recent years, where his effectiveness was seen in matchups against New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz, Denver Broncos receiver Wes Welker and Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton. In the 2011 season, Arrington tied for the NFL lead in interceptions, with seven. Last season, he scored touchdowns on a fumble recovery and a blocked field goal.
As for the Patriots' overall depth at cornerback, the release of Arrington means the team will be without its top three players at the position from last season: Darrelle Revis (Jets), Brandon Browner (Saints) and Arrington. The team also waived 2012 seventh-round draft choice Alfonzo Dennard last week.
The remaining players on the depth chart are Malcolm Butler, Bradley Fletcher, Logan Ryan, Robert McClain, Chimdi Chekwa, Dax Swanson, Justin Green and rookies Darryl Roberts, Jimmy Jean and Eric Patterson.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.