Nate Ebner DB NE Jul 01 '13

ESPN Boston gives second-year S Nate Ebner a 65 percent chance of keeping his roster spot.

Ebner played just 36 snaps as a sixth-round rookie, while the Pats loaded up on defensive backs in April's draft. Ebner showed well as a special teamer last season, but will have to prove he's a core part of New England's third unit to keep his roster spot.

Nate Ebner DB NE Aug 04 '12

Patriots signed sixth-round S Nate Ebner made his camp debut Friday.

Ebner was sidelined by an undisclosed injury after passing his initial camp physical. The missed time doesn't bode well for a player on the roster bubble, but Ebner should be given every opportunity to shine on special teams in the preseason.

Nate Ebner DB NE May 21 '12

Patriots signed sixth-round WR Nate Ebner to a four-year contract.

Ebner won't see many snaps at wide receiver, but the team is hoping to turn him into an impact player on special teams. A former rugby player, Ebner's best asset is his abilities in kick coverage. If his NFL career falls through, Ebner intends on returning to rugby.

Nate Ebner DB NE May 09 '12

Ohio State assistant Mike Vrabel is convinced that Patriots seventh-round pick Nate Ebner can be a high-quality NFL special teamer.

Ebner is a 6-foot, 205-pound rugby player, but the Pats want him to be a special teams dynamo. "He can run through traffic without losing speed," explained Vrabel. "Guys that cover kicks and maintain their speed in traffic are what you're looking for." Ebner plans to return to rugby if his football career fails.