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FOXBOROUGH, Mass. â€” Joseph Banyard was the leading rusher again for the New Orleans Saints on Thursday, but his 27 yards on seven carries werenâ€™t enough to keep the New England Patriots from eaking out a 7-6 victory.
Banyard, who recently signed a three-year con-tract with the Saints as a rookie free agent after starring at Sweetwater High School and the Uni-versity of Texas-El Paso, also caught a six-yard pass and recorded one tackle on defense. For the season, Banyard has 12 rushes for 45 yards, plus two receptions for three yards and three tackles. He had a season-high nine-yard gain on Thursday. The first scheduled roster cut for the Saints to 80 players is Aug. 28, with a final cut to the 53-player limit scheduled Sept. 2.
The Saints will host the Washington Redskins in their season opener on Sept. 9.
Banyard â€” who played for Sweetwater for three years from 2005-07 â€” was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Jackson-ville Jaguars in late April before being waived a few weeks later. However, he got a second chance in June after an impressive performance at the Saintsâ€™ minicamp.
Harrell tries to solidify No. 2 spot in loss to San Diego
SAN DIEGO â€” Former Texas Tech star Graham Harrell, trying to solidify his spot as the No. 2 quarterback with the Green Bay Packers behind Aaron Rodgers, had some bad misses early but hit Randall Cobb on a 23-yard pass that set up a 3-yard touchdown between the two in the closing seconds of the first half of a 21-13 exhibition loss Thursday to the San Diego Chargers. Harrell finished 15 of 27 for 135 yards.
â€śWe did some good things at times and then we went through some rough patches,â€ť Harrell said. â€śHopefully, we will get better.â€ť