The New Orleans Saints let go a fan favorite on Wednesday.


A linebacker and former special teams captain, Mauti first signed with the Saints in 2015 and became instantly popular, after blocking a punt against the Atlanta Falcons during a Thursday Night Football contest, and returning it for a touchdown.

The 28-year old Mauti, who played for the Minnesota Vikings for two seasons before joining the Saints, saw his 2016 campaign cut short as he battled ulcerative colitis.

New Orleans placed him on the non-football injury list in November of that year when Mauti's condition required multiple surgeries to remove his large intestine.

The 6-foot-2, 240-pound Mauti rejoined the Saints in October of last season, contributing primarily on special teams, accumulating 11 total tackles.

In three seasons with the Saints, Mauti appeared in 35 games, including two as a starter, compiling 42 total tackles.

Also on Wednesday, the Saints waived offensive lineman John Theus off injured reserve, while signing receiver Eldridge Massington, an undrafted free agent from UCLA.

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Massington caught nine passes for 111 yards and two touchdowns in 13 games as a fifth-year senior for the Bruins last season.

Over his college career at UCLA, Massington compiled 65 receptions for 883 yards and five touchdowns.