Former New England Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins (58), shown Oct. 6, 2019, was released by the Detroit Lions last week after the team was unable to locate a trade partner for him. File Photo by David Tulis/UPI | License Photo
Oct. 5 (UPI) -- The New England Patriots are nearing a deal with former Detroit Lions linebacker Jamie Collins that will bring back the veteran defender for a third stint with the organization.
League sources told ESPN, NFL Media and the Boston Globe on Tuesday that Collins is scheduled to fly out to New England on Wednesday to sign his deal. According to the outlets, the former All-Pro linebacker had other interested teams, but his familiarity with the Patriots led him back to the franchise.
The Lions released Collins on Sept. 28 after the team couldn't locate a trade partner for him.
Collins entered the league as a second-round draft pick of the Patriots in 2013. He was traded to the Cleveland Browns in 2016, then returned to play for New England in 2019.
The 31-year-old Collins signed a three-year contract with the Lions as a free agent in 2020.
The Patriots are expected to place defensive lineman Henry Anderson on injured reserve to make room for Collins on the roster, ESPN reported. The team said Anderson suffered a chest injury during Sunday night's loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Collins is joining a Patriots linebacker group that includes veterans Dont'a Hightower and Kyle Van Noy. New England lost Raekwon McMillan to a torn ACL in the preseason, and Ja'Whaun Bentley has been nursing a shoulder ailment, leaving a void that Collins can help fill.
Also Tuesday, the Patriots put starting left tackle Isaiah Wynn and starting left guard Mike Onwenu on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert waves his fist to the crowd after a 28-14 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif., on Monday. Photo by Jon SooHoo/UPI | License Photo