NFL free agency begins Tuesday at 4pm. Here is one view on the things the Patriots could, should and won’t.
The New England Patriots should sign Center Alex Mack of the Cleveland Browns. Alex Mack has been one of the best centers in football since he was selected in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft. Mack has started all 80 games he has played in and is a two time pro bowl selection.
Many have said that the Patriots number one need is a tight end, or pass rusher, offensive line is in need of some help. With Dante Scarnecchia retiring and being replaced by Dave DeGuglielmo, the Patriots might not have the same “Coach Up” ability that they have had in the past. In the Patriots losses in the playoffs since the fateful loss to the Giants in Super Bowl 42, one thing has been consistent. The Patriots offensive line was beat up the middle. With Mack playing the center position and Logan Mankins next to him the Patriots are stacked. The team will have the ability to protect its aging Quarterback as well as pave the way for a solid running game.
Aqib Talib came out earlier this week and said he wanted to be paid like a top cornerback. Why wouldn’t he? He is a top NFL corner. While he has been injured quite a bit in his time in the NFL, when he is on the field he is a difference maker. Many Patriots fans came out saying “See Ya!” when they read this. However what is top corner money. No one is going to pay him like Revis and his 16 million per season. A salary that pays him eight to ten million per year is likely. The Patriots would be wise to lock this guy up. The Washington Redskins have shown interested. Also, it has come to light that Revis will be cut as soon as Wednesday
If Talib can't be signed the Patriots need to sign a replacement. Alterraun Verner has said he could see himself taking less money to play for a winner. That sounds like a Patriots type of player right there.
Julian Edelman may command money that keeps him out of the Patriots price range. Although is losing him the end of the world? No it wouldn’t be. Edelman is a gutsy player and caught 105 balls on the year. How productive was he? He only had six touchdowns and 10.1 yards per catch. His numbers were so high because he was the only Patriots wide receiver that played all 16 games. He is good but not worth the money that could be thrown around.
What is going to happen with Vince Wilfork? Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston wrote about the Patriots trying to work a contract out with Vince or the possibility he get released. I would be extremely surprised if this doesn’t get done. Wilfork is still a good player. I would expect the Patriots to offer him a two year contract extension and make his cap hit a bonus they can stretch over two to three seasons
With the release of T.J. Moe Monday it gives me the hunch that Julian Edelman will be resigning with the team. Also, I believe that this is a good sign for Danny Amendola to stick around. The Patriots signed Moe to a three year deal and gave him $30,000 to sign. While an injured achilles kept him out of action last season he projected to play a slot roll. I can’t see the team releasing a player with his skill set if Edelman and Amendola are not in the plans for the 2014 season.