New England released punter Zoltan Mesko of Twinsburg High School and the University of Michigan, according to Adam Caplan of ESPN and Sirius/XM radio.
Mesko, a three-year veteran who was drafted in the fifth round in 2010, lost out to rookie Ryan Allen. Allen, from Louisiana Tech, became the only player to win the Ray Guy Award in back-to-back seasons in 2012.
In 2012, Mesko ranked 15th in the AFC in net punting average (37.9). That was the lowest of his career, after he netted 41.5 yards in 2011 and 38.4 in 2010. Mesko's career averages were 43.1 yards, 46.5 and 43.2, respectively, for the 2012, '11, and '10 seasons. In the Patriots' preseason finale against the New York Giants, Mesko netted 33.2 yards.
Tight end Jake Ballard of Ohio State was among the cuts announced by the Patriots. Claimed off waivers from the Giants, Ballard sat out last season with a knee injury suffered in the Super Bowl.