The New Orleans Saints cut veteran wide receivers Michael Floyd and Brandon Tate, released defensive end Hau’oli Kikaha and placed running back Shane Vereen on injured reserve Friday as the team began to pare its roster to 53 players.
Floyd and Tate had signed with the Saints on Aug. 1 but could not secure a roster spot after competing with wide receivers Michael Thomas, Ted Ginn Jr., Tre’Quan Smith, Austin Carr, Tommylee Lewis and Cameron Meredith during the preseason.
The 30-year-old Tate did not catch a pass in a preseason game but returned three kickoffs for 99 yards and two punts for 7 yards. He has spent nine seasons with the New England Patriots, Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills.
The 28-year-old Floyd had one reception for 16 yards in the preseason. He was with the Minnesota Vikings last year and made 10 catches for 78 yards.
A former first-round draft pick of the Arizona Cardinals, Floyd also spent time the past two years with the Cardinals and the Patriots.
Vereen was injured during the Saints’ final preseason game on Thursday night but was unlikely to make the team. Third-year running back Jonathan Williams and rookie running back Boston Scott are expected to to back up starter Alvin Kamara while veteran Mark Ingram serves a four-game suspension for violating the NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances.
During the preseason, the 29-year-old Vereen rushed for 22 yards on seven carries and had nine catches for 41 yards. He came to the Saints in July after seven seasons with the New England Patriots and the New York Giants.
The 6-foot-3, 246-pound Kikaha, 26, started 11 career games with the Saints in three seasons. He missed the 2016 season with a torn ACL.
The Saints also cut defensive end George Johnson, guard Don Barclay, linebacker Jayrone Elliott and defensive back Robert Nelson.