Former Atlanta Falcons defensive lineman Ra’Shede Hageman worked out for the New England Patriots on Wednesday, according to the league’s transaction report as well as NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The Falcons released Hageman just days before the 2017 season opened in the wake of domestic violence charges.
Why Ra’Shede Hageman was cut and suspended
On Sept. 2, 2017, Hageman was placed on the commissioner’s exempt list after multiple domestic-violence charges — “interfering with a call for emergency help, battery family violence and cruelty to children in the third degree,” per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution — stemming from a March 2016 incident.
The charges stem from an incident in which Hageman pulled the hair of the mother of his child and pushed her down in the parking lot outside of her apartment, causing her to sustain lacerations on her left hand and elbow. Hageman then took her phone, preventing her from calling 911. This incident happened in front of the couple’s child.
The NFL suspended him six games, and the Falcons released him on Sept. 4, saying, “The organizational decision to move forward without Hageman was made by the Falcons after a thorough investigative process by local authorities.”
Hageman’s football background
The Falcons took Hageman early in the second round (No. 37 overall) of the 2014 draft. Hageman played in all 16 games as a rookie, posting 11 tackles and one sack. He again played all 16 games — including 12 starts — in his second season and then 12 games in 2016. He has 40 career tackles and four sacks in 44 regular-season games. He appeared in Super Bowl LI against the Patriots and recorded two tackles. He did not play a single regular-season snap last year.
Hageman is a monstrous presence in the middle of the defensive line at 6-foot-6 and 310 pounds. In Atlanta, he proved that he can be part of the line rotation on a very good team, and he’s just 27 years old.
The Patriots have some solid interior line depth with starters Malcom Brown and Lawrence Guy returning, 2015 first-rounder Danny Shelton coming in via trade from Cleveland, and a host of other bodies on the depth chart. While the Patriots might not be Hageman’s destination — it was just an offseason workout, after all — whether or not other teams bring in Hageman and/or move to sign him is worth monitoring given his troubled past.
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