HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (AP) -The New York Jets released veteran fullback Darian Barnes on Wednesday after he was inactive for the team's last four games.
The Jets also released cornerback Manny Collins from the practice squad and signed wide receiver David Ball to replace him.
Barnes was signed in the offseason to be the lead blocker for Thomas Jones, but played in only five of the Jets' 11 games and started four. He led the way for two of Jones' three 100-yard games, but hasn't played since starting at Cincinnati on Oct. 21.
``It's one of my good friends on the team and he's your fullback,'' Jones said. ``You have that relationship with the fullback. Yeah, it's going to be tough not having him around, but it's a business.''
Barnes became expendable as coach Eric Mangini used mostly two tight-end sets with Joe Kowalewski lining up in the backfield as an H-back. The Jets' only remaining fullback is Stacy Tutt, who was recently placed on injured reserve with a knee injury.
``We have multiple tight ends on the roster right now,'' Mangini said. ``The way that we're set up, you can go in and out of the one-back sets or the two-back sets with those players and it just gives you some more flexibility.''
Collins, a rookie out of Rutgers, hasn't played for the Jets, but has been signed and released from the practice squad a few times this season.
Ball, a rookie out of New Hampshire, broke Jerry Rice's Division I-AA record for touchdown receptions with 58. Ball had been on Chicago's practice squad before being released in September.
Also, the Jets signed punter Jeremy Kapinos to the practice squad Tuesday.
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