Patriots release ex-Hawkeye linebacker James Morris

Former Iowa linebacker James Morris has been released by the New England Patriots.

Morris’ release comes four days after the Patriots signed the undrafted rookie.

Morris, 22, was just the sixth player in Iowa history to record 400 career tackles after finishing with 400 tackles, 10.5 sacks and six interceptions as a three-year starter. The 6-foot-2, 240-pounder was named a team captain in 2013 and started in all 13 games and finished second on the team with 107 total tackles, eight sacks and four interceptions.

“James is just fine,” his father and Iowa equipment manager Greg Morris said. “He looks at this as a temporary bump in the road and looks forward to another opportunity.”

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz commented last week that he thought Morris would have a bright NFL future. Morris’ quick release doesn’t mean he won’t latch on to another team.

“I think James Morris will have a tremendous NFL career,” Ferentz told the Des Moines Register at the Boone/Story County I-Club event. “I’ve told several people I think they’re underestimating him. I think that will be proven out in time.”