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Patriots receive roster exemption for Brandon Bolden

Brandon Bolden is set to return from his four-game suspension, but the Patriots received a roster exemption for a week.

Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE

The New England Patriots were granted a roster exemption for running back Brandon Bolden on Monday. Bolden's four-game suspension ended Monday.

The Patriots will now not have to activate Bolden until Tuesday, Dec. 11. That allows them to keep an extra player on their roster while they make a decision. Bolden was suspended for a violation of the NFL's policy on performance enhancing substances.

While New England received extra time to make the decision, they are likely to activate Bolden at some point. Even though New England has a crowded backfield with Danny Woodhead, Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley, Bolden proved to be a key contributor earlier in the season. Bolden appeared in six games this season, rushing for 234 yards and two touchdowns on 43 attempts.

He also provides the Patriots with another power running threat to compliment Woodhead and Vereen. While the Patriots have until Dec. 11, they can activate Bolden at any time.