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Patriots LS Joe Cardona Out for the 2016 Season?

Steve Balestrieri
Steve Balestrieri on Twitter
May 5, 2016 at 1:27 pm ET

Patriots LS Joe Cardona Out for the 2016 Season?(PHOTO: Steve Balestrieri - PatsFans.com)

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Pats Long-snapper May Have to fulfill Navy commitments

The Patriots made a brief ripple in the news in April with the news that they had signed long-snapper Christian Yount. Having spent a 5th round draft pick in 2015 on Naval Academy graduate Joe Cardona, the news seemed intriguing.

Cardona was very solid for the Patriots in his rookie season, balancing the fine line between being a professional football player and a commissioned Naval Officer. Cardona was assigned to the Naval Preparatory Academy in Newport, RI last season with the expectation that in a year, he’d be assigned to a ship in Bath, Maine.

Cardona Ebner

Now his absence at OTAs could stretch for a large chunk of, if not the entire 2016 season.

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus appeared on the Dan Patrick Show this morning to discuss the situation surrounding former Navy QB and Baltimore Ravens draft pick Keenan Reynolds and his dreams in pursuing a professional football career as well as filling his Navy commitment.

“We have Joe Cardona, long snapper for the Patriots. He played last year for the Patriots while he was on active duty because he was able to work them both out. He’s been assigned to a ship and he’s going to report to that ship so he may need to leave the Patriots for a year or so in order to go fulfill that role,” Mabus said. “We also have Joe Greenspan, who played professional soccer. He’s on a ship today.”

Bill Belichick spoke last season about the balancing act that Cardona had to endure a year ago, something the Patriots were very supportive with. “He’s one of the first guys that’s really been in this situation,” Belichick said.

“In this case, Joe’s responsibilities are really going on at the same time.”

Now the Patriots may have to (in the Secretary of the Navy’s words), deal without Cardona for the entire season. If so, that would be a blow to the Patriots STs units, but would allow Yount plenty of time to acclimate himself to kicker Stephen Gostkowski and punter Ryan Allen.

Yount is a four-year veteran of the NFL and would immediately become a player to watch this summer.

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About Steve Balestrieri

A former US Army Special Forces NCO and Officer, Steve has been following the Patriots since their days at Fenway Park. Steve has worked in the film industry and wrote as an Military Editor at SpecialOperations.com, 1945.com as a reporter for the Millbury Daily Voice, Millbury-Sutton Chronicle, and the Grafton News. He's also a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA)


Tags: 2016 Patriots Roster 53 Man Roster Projection Bill Belichick Christian Yount Joe Cardona Keenan Reynolds Navy Commitment New England Patriots Patriots long-snapper Ray Mabus Secretary of the Navy

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