Davis joined the Patriots on a one-year deal May 11, four days after being reinstated by the NFL from an indefinite suspension for a second violation of the league's substance abuse policy. When the suspension was announced in February 2014, Davis said he was being punished for taking a supplement that included a banned substance. He said it wasn't for marijuana, which was the reason for his first suspension.
On Tuesday, coach Bill Belichick was asked about Davis.
"Fred's been here through the whole process, the OTAs; it's a different kind of system for him," Belichick said. "He's been out of football for a little while, but [he has] worked hard, very hard, to try to pick things up and learn a new system. He's making progress."
But it apparently wasn't enough progress for Belichick's liking, as the club thins its depth at a position where Davis was considered a bubble player to make the roster. Rob Gronkowski, Scott Chandler and Michael Hoomanawanui top the depth chart, followed by sixth-round draft choice A.J. Derby, converted defensive end Jake Bequette and undrafted rookie Jimmay Mundine.
The 29-year-old Davis played 72 games with the Washington Redskins from 2008 to 2013. A second-round draft selection in 2008, Davis has 162 career receptions for 2,043 yards and 13 touchdowns.