Hicks, who is 6-foot-5, 324 pounds, is a fourth-year player out of Regina (Canada). He has appeared in 47 career regular-season games, with 33 starts. He started the first three games for the Saints this season.
The move is a bit surprising on the Saints' end, because Hicks, 25, has been a starter for the past three years and showed so much potential early in his career. He also appeared to have a strong training camp this summer after he said he shed 20 pounds.
With Rob Gronkowski, Scott Chandler and Michael Williams stacking the tight end position, Hoomanawanui became expendable.