Patriots place WR Jordan Matthews in injured reserve after 'significant' hamstring injury

The New England Patriots placed veteran wide receiver Jordan Matthews on injured reserve on Wednesday, a few days after he suffered a “significant” hamstring injury in practice Sunday, according to ESPN’s Field Yates.

Initially reported to have cut Matthews, the Patriots instead opted to put the 26-year-old on IR, where could possibly negotiate an injury settlement and reach free agency. He currently does not count as a member of New England’s 90-man roster.

Matthews was in his first year in New England

The Eagles took Matthews in the second round of the 2014 draft, and he started strong with 152 catches for 1,869 yards and 16 touchdowns in his first two seasons combined.

But after a disappointing third season which included some ankle issues, Matthews was traded to Buffalo in exchange for cornerback Ronald Darby. The Eagles also sent the Bills a third-round pick. In Buffalo’s run-heavy offense, Matthews didn’t get much going and continued to battle a long list of health issues. He played in 10 games (seven starts), finishing with a 25/282/1 stat line.

The Patriots brought in Matthews, 26, to help a receiving corps that lost Danny Amendola to the Dolphins and will be without Julian Edelman for the first four games of the season after he violated the NFL’s drug policy. The team also traded away Brandin Cooks, who had a 1,000-yard campaign in his lone season in Boston.

Current Patriots wideouts Kenny Britt and Malcolm Mitchell are also battling injury, per ESPN’s Field Yates.

Eric Decker worked out for the Patriots on Monday

It’s apparent the Patriots need wide receiver help, and they’re hoping it can come in the form of slot-man Eric Decker. The 31-year-old had 54 catches for 563 yards and a touchdown last year for Tennessee. Decker had back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons with the Broncos in 2012 and 2013 and another one in 2015 with the Jets.

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Jordan Matthews’ stint in Boston lasted just a few months. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)