Patriots' 2024 Free Agency Thread

Oct 12, 2023
802
Judon was a great signing, so was Gilmore. I'm not saying you should never throw a bag at FAs. I am saying that Ridley, Jonah Williams, and Tyron Smith aren't those level of players. Spending for the sake of spending is dumb.
Those types of players (Gilmore, Judon) rarely hit free agency and the Pats don’t have any of those caliber guys internally on the horizon to re-sign other than maybe Barmore if he keeps improving.

At some point they’re going to have to spend big money on “good not great” guys or they’re never actually going to improve the roster

Spending for the sake of spending is dumb, I think everyone agrees on that. Being afraid to overspend on guys to improve your roster at key positions is also dumb. Sitting on huge amounts of cap space while you let a franchise QB get pummeled because you don’t want to over extend on a LT, or consistently running out a bottom 5 WR group because you’re hoarding cash until you can get a “Judon/Gilmore” type deal at WR isn’t an effective way to build a roster.

What happens if they can’t draft a good WR or LT over the next 2 years? Just keep filling those spots with dumpster dive guys who are good “value” but not actually quality players and hope eventually one day they hit on someone in the draft?
 
Oct 12, 2023
802
1) They haven't signed all their own players worth keeping; Barmore and Judon still need signing and will cost against the current cap.
2) Having $50m in space doesn't mean they should spend recklessly on mid or questionable talent. Keeping the cap space open provides flexibility for trades and unexpected players becoming available.
Re-signing an aging Judon is likely the same type of bad deal many are glad they haven’t extended this year to external players. Barmore is a very good player but if he wants a Wilkins-esque deal, that’s probably a bad overpay as well. If those guys want market value, then I suppose they’re going to be gone if the team doesn’t want to pay the inflated free agency prices
 

ManicCompression

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Those types of players (Gilmore, Judon) rarely hit free agency and the Pats don’t have any of those caliber guys internally on the horizon to re-sign other than maybe Barmore if he keeps improving.

At some point they’re going to have to spend big money on “good not great” guys or they’re never actually going to improve the roster

Spending for the sake of spending is dumb, I think everyone agrees on that. Being afraid to overspend on guys to improve your roster at key positions is also dumb. Sitting on huge amounts of cap space while you let a franchise QB get pummeled because you don’t want to over extend on a LT, or consistently running out a bottom 5 WR group because you’re hoarding cash until you can get a “Judon/Gilmore” type deal at WR isn’t an effective way to build a roster.

What happens if they can’t draft a good WR or LT over the next 2 years? Just keep filling those spots with dumpster dive guys who are good “value” but not actually quality players and hope eventually one day they hit on someone in the draft?
We're four days into the offseason. They don't know what QB is going to be on the roster. They don't know what his learning curve is going to be like. They don't know who/if they're going to draft at LT or WR and how those guys acclimate to the roster.

Why sign Jonah Williams to a huge deal if you might be finding your LT of the future in the 2nd? Why sign Ridley if you might draft Ladd McConkey? Why do anything if Drake Maye or Jayden Daniels isn't ready to start until mid-season or later?

If they do need to improve the line and receiver, guess what? They have all of next year's free agency and a ton of cap room that they rolled over to address it, along with (possibly) an exciting second year QB to entice FAs to join a winner. I can assure you, players on the level of Jonah Williams and Tyron Smith will be available next year just as they are this year. We're not missing out on anything.

You're insisting that the team "do something" to raise their record from 5-12 to 7-10 next year and it's just not worth it in the long-term. Having 31 year old Calvin Ridley ossifying on your roster and sucking up cap space when the team is ascending is the dumb thing to do.
 
Oct 12, 2023
802
This team doesn't have a foundation. Its best players, save for Gonzalez (and he's kind of a wild card considering how many games he's played) and Judon (who's on the back nine), are at the least valuable positions in football. You know why we couldn't find a QB, Tackle, or WR in FA? Because every team in the league is looking for one of those positions, if not two (or bad teams, three). Scarcity is why we're talking ourselves into thinking that Calvin Ridley, maybe like the 30th best receiver in the NFL if I'm being generous, is a "top free agent target."

The best teams build through the draft, then fill holes in FA with big signings when they have a foundation. The lack of FA movement this offseason is kind of irrelevant for the Patriots. Everything is going to depend on how they do the next couple of drafts and if they can find long term starters at the most valuable positions in football. If they can't, then it's going to be a tough few years... but that will have nothing to do with them not signing Calvin Ridley this offseason.

I'm happy that this team is being real about the state of the roster and not talking themselves into the "this is a playoff team with an average QB" nonsense. Yes, this team with an average QB and an easy schedule could hypothetically go 10-7 and then get whooped in the first round. As we've seen, that's not sustainable. It's not even fun. Take the slow and low approach, improve the roster, get younger (this team was the 27th oldest in the league last year!), and try to build a team that can get into the playoffs repeatedly over many years.
While you’re right that a slow approach to build the core is the right approach (accepting that it is likely to fail simply due to how hard it is to draft consistently well), you also want to set your franchise QB up for success while you’re bringing in those core pieces over the next 3-4 years.

We’ve seen plenty of young QB’s fail in part because the talent around them in their first few years is dreadful. The idea that Drake Maye (or whoever) is equally likely to hit his ceiling with Okarofor or McDermott protecting him with Bourne as his primary target and Tyron Smith/Ridley in those spots is questionable at best.

If we’re looking at this as a “core through the draft” rebuild, that’s a 3-5 year project. Which is fine, but if that’s the case, these “bad contracts”’are largely going to be off the books by the time your actual window to compete arrives. There’s no downside to short term overpays to support a franchise QB’s development. There is significant downside IMO sitting on huge stacks of cash for 3-4 years while Drake Maye (etc) gets the Tim Couch/David Carr treatment because Okarofor or some drafted LT who flops is protecting him and nobody can get open.
 

ManicCompression

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While you’re right that a slow approach to build the core is the right approach (accepting that it is likely to fail simply due to how hard it is to draft consistently well), you also want to set your franchise QB up for success while you’re bringing in those core pieces over the next 3-4 years.

We’ve seen plenty of young QB’s fail in part because the talent around them in their first few years is dreadful. The idea that Drake Maye (or whoever) is equally likely to hit his ceiling with Okarofor or McDermott protecting him with Bourne as his primary target and Tyron Smith/Ridley in those spots is questionable at best.

If we’re looking at this as a “core through the draft” rebuild, that’s a 3-5 year project. Which is fine, but if that’s the case, these “bad contracts”’are largely going to be off the books by the time your actual window to compete arrives. There’s no downside to short term overpays to support a franchise QB’s development. There is significant downside IMO sitting on huge stacks of cash for 3-4 years while Drake Maye (etc) gets the Tim Couch/David Carr treatment because Okarofor or some drafted LT who flops is protecting him and nobody can get open.
You're assuming Tyron Smith wanted to sign here - a big assumption. You're also assuming that Tyron Smith will play a lot of games, which is also a big assumption. I would say that expecting Calvin Ridley to play and be the guy he was 4 years ago is a big assumption as well. I mean, Trevor Lawrence got worse with Calvin Ridley added to the offense - Ridley did absolutely nothing for his development.

I don't think that what was available to the Patriots this offseason is considerably better than what they already have on the roster or what they could get in the draft. From your posts, you seem to think teams should approach their team planning with zero confidence in their ability to scout players in the draft, but no organization is going to operate like that. And no GM is sitting there thinking "I should sign a left tackle this free agency, even if draft one with one of my first two picks, just in case that pick doesn't work out." It's either/or - if we sign Jonah WIlliams, we're not picking an LT... and is Jonah WIlliams truly the solution here? Prob not - he's fairly mid. Not to mention, free agents won't sign here for over-market money simply to compete in camp for a left tackle job.

So I just don't buy that all of these scenarios you're putting out were even on the table for the Patriots except as longshots for the right money. Drake Maye's development isn't going to hinge on whether Tyron Smith is protecting his blindside for 8 games or if he has a declining Calvin Ridley running routes. Frankly, if it does, that means he's not very good to begin with, and we have bigger problems.
 

RG33

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5 Stages of a Rebuild - SoSH Style

1. FAs won’t come here because the weather sucks
2. FAs won’t come here because the owners are too cheap
3. FAs won’t come here because taxes are too high
4. FAs won’t come here because the team stinks and we’ll never contend again
5. FAs will come here again if we are winning and able to contend again
 

BigSoxFan

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I really hope we’re in on Mike Williams, assuming last year’s injury issues are behind him. He is meeting with the Jets on Monday and Panthers on Tuesdays so you’d think we’d have a shot. Turns 30 in October so I wouldn’t go crazy but he would instantly be this team’s best WR.
 

Van Everyman

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I would bet dollars to donuts that we don’t sign Mike Williams. There has been no smoke around him from the Pats’ perspective as I understand it and they have already more or less come out and said they are now pivoting to the draft for WR.

The Jets make sense. I’d be shocked if he even makes it to Carolina on Tuesday.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Why are we all talking about a 3-5 year rebuild, when just a few months ago all the noise was that this team was an average QB away form the playoffs? Like, which is it?
 

Justthetippett

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Why are we all talking about a 3-5 year rebuild, when just a few months ago all the noise was that this team was an average QB away form the playoffs? Like, which is it?
Well, rebuild to what? If it's a championship contender, then definitely a longer time frame. If a playoff contender, then I think it could be this year. Defense is there already. If the offense can be close to league average, then they will have a chance to be around .500 and competitive for a WC. Look at the dregs that got in this year. The bar is not high.
 

BaseballJones

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Well, rebuild to what? If it's a championship contender, then definitely a longer time frame. If a playoff contender, then I think it could be this year. Defense is there already. If the offense can be close to league average, then they will have a chance to be around .500 and competitive for a WC. Look at the dregs that got in this year. The bar is not high.
If the defense is as good as we think it is, and the offense is “just” league average, the Pats will win 10-11 games.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Re-signing an aging Judon is likely the same type of bad deal many are glad they haven’t extended this year to external players. Barmore is a very good player but if he wants a Wilkins-esque deal, that’s probably a bad overpay as well. If those guys want market value, then I suppose they’re going to be gone if the team doesn’t want to pay the inflated free agency prices
I’d happily trade Judon if they could get a 2nd or 3rd rounder for him rather than extending him. I am not sure they can get that value but they should if they can. A 2nd seems like a pipe dream
 

luckiestman

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Massachusetts is pretty good, guys. Jan, Feb, March suck but otherwise it is better than most parts of the country.
If the defense is as good as we think it is, and the offense is “just” league average, the Pats will win 10-11 games.
Sure, but where is this league average offense coming from? What position group would you say is middle of the pack right now?
 

E5 Yaz

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I’d happily trade Judon if they could get a 2nd or 3rd rounder for him rather than extending him. I am not sure they can get that value but they should if they can. A 2nd seems like a pipe dream
I don't know if Judon is the right guy to trade, but I wouldn't be surprised if they don't wind up with more picks in rounds 1-4 than they have at the moment
 

NortheasternPJ

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I don't know if Judon is the right guy to trade, but I wouldn't be surprised if they don't wind up with more picks in rounds 1-4 than they have at the moment
I agree but it’s either sign him or extend him. Maybe he’ll play on a 1 year if they guarantee the contract but I don’t know. He’d be stupid to take a snap as he has no guarantees left.
 

BaseballJones

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Massachusetts is pretty good, guys. Jan, Feb, March suck but otherwise it is better than most parts of the country.


Sure, but where is this league average offense coming from? What position group would you say is middle of the pack right now?
No idea. I was just replying to what @Justthetippett said: "Defense is there already. If the offense can be close to league average, then they will have a chance to be around .500 and competitive for a WC."
 

Justthetippett

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Massachusetts is pretty good, guys. Jan, Feb, March suck but otherwise it is better than most parts of the country.


Sure, but where is this league average offense coming from? What position group would you say is middle of the pack right now?
Running game, TEs and, importantly, the offensive coaching staff are all around average. And average is really not that good, so again, it's a low bar.
 

Cellar-Door

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Re-signing an aging Judon is likely the same type of bad deal many are glad they haven’t extended this year to external players. Barmore is a very good player but if he wants a Wilkins-esque deal, that’s probably a bad overpay as well. If those guys want market value, then I suppose they’re going to be gone if the team doesn’t want to pay the inflated free agency prices
Judon is interesting. I think there may be a value play of giving him a short extension now, coming off injury, then if he proves he's back you just helped his trade value, because it's a couple years and you're going to eat the bonus. Barmore... I'd extend him, he'll probably get a bit less than WIlkins money as it's an extension, and he knows he can be tagged next year.

Why are we all talking about a 3-5 year rebuild, when just a few months ago all the noise was that this team was an average QB away form the playoffs? Like, which is it?
I think it's a 2-3 year rebuild, that's usually how it goes with rookie QBs, by year 3 you should know..
I don't know that they were a playoff contender last year with average QB play, but if they were it was fully healthy. Coming into this year a bunch of key guys are older, injured, both or gone.
Trent Brown is not coming back by all accounts. Strange is coming off a major injury, Judon and Gonzo the same. Who knows if you can expect a return to career norms for Anderson after his illness lost season.
A lot of things went wrong last year and some of them will continue to have effects going forward.
If they hit on QB I expect somewhere between 6 and 8 wins this year, go into next offseason, shore up some depth/role spots in FA, draft well and they'll be a legit threat to make the playoffs.

Edit- that should be hit on the QB and he's capable of playing from day 1.
 

MikeM

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The Jets make sense. I’d be shocked if he even makes it to Carolina on Tuesday.
The Jets only make sense from a wanting to grab headlines perspective.

As a personal fit Mike Williams as a WR2 would realistically go severely under utilized in the Hackett offense, and we already have enough chips pushed in on high risk injury guys.

I don't *think* it happens because of the latter.
 

EL Jeffe

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They tried to get Ridley and made an aggressive offer. Should they have given a 30 year old WR $30m/year with $60m guaranteed when he's facing the same cliff that OBJ, Julio Jones, and pretty much every NFL WR who relies on explosion and twitch faces and falls off from right around their age 30 season?

Look, none of know how Wolf and the coaching staff view some of the internal options. Yes, we know they want to "weaponize" the offense. Yes, we can see LT is a giant question mark from the outside. But if they saw Tyron Smith as the only actual upgrade (for the handful of games he's actually available...and even then he likely wasn't interested in NE), I don't blame them for not shelling out money for any of the meh FA LTs just so they can check a box. Kyed's reporting suggests they think Okorafor is a viable LT candidate, even if he most likely isn't The Guy moving forward. Maybe they think Calvin Anderson is a viable LT with a normal offseason and a clean bill of health (and before people freak out, yes, I know Calvin Anderson was unplayable last year. I also know he was thrown into an impossible situation, with what--a week of camp to try to ramp up and play OT? Good luck!). Whatever the team's 2022 evaluation of Calvin Anderson was, I don't know. But maybe they see a guy they can get by with if they have to--which is what they'd be doing with any of the FA LTs...getting by--and that includes Jonah Williams. I'm sure a rookie LT will be in the mix as well.

Another example is we don't know how the team feels about Marcus Jones, Alex Austin, Marco Wilson, or Isaiah Bolden. Wilson and Bolden are RAS darlings, and maybe they feel like one of them can pop in their scheme. Austin obviously played well in a small sample size down the stretch. Maybe instead of signing a vet CB like Gilmore or Xavien Howard, they want to give the kids a chance to sink or swim since they're all dirt cheap and cost controlled (except Wilson, I think he's a FA next year). In fairness, I'd like to see Julian Blackmon signed at safety, since he's young and fills a need they currently don't have on the roster, but IDK.

They were never going to fill every need in a single offseason. Wolf has been pretty upfront about building through the draft, playing and developing young talent, and prioritizing extending their core players. They appear to be doing just that, and it's a smart way to go about it.
 

Jimbodandy

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Why are we all talking about a 3-5 year rebuild, when just a few months ago all the noise was that this team was an average QB away form the playoffs? Like, which is it?
First, it's not one or the other. You can try to be competitive fast and still avoid old guys on big deals or one year deals just for a one season boost. Second, anyone who thinks that average QB play was worth 6-7 wins for last year's team is delusional.

This team has too many holes to GFIN in 2024 with short term contracts. That doesn't equal "punt on 2024", no matter how often talk show morons repeat that as if it were true.
 
Last edited:
Oct 12, 2023
802
The people who said we were just and average qb away were wrong and realization is starting to set in.
On top of that, look at the QB’s they faced last year. Z.Wilson, Siemian, Trubisky, Minshew, Jimmy G, Howell, Devito, R.Wilson, Carr

Sure “if” the Patriots had better health and “if” they had an average QB, maybe they win a couple more games against that lot (and hold on to the same wins they got)

But in 2024, their slate of opposing teams/QB’s looks more formidable and unless a bunch of teams lose their starting guys and are starting trash QB’s to the extent we saw last year, they only have a couple where an average QB (which Brissett, much as I like him, has never been) could be considered as good. Geno Smith, Levis, Caleb Williams, Murray and Lawrence are the worst QB’s on their schedule this year and I don’t see any teams with good QBs who are likely to be bad. Maybe the Colts regress or maybe Harbaugh can’t get the Chargers to respectable level quickly. But the Pats are worse than every team on their schedule except maybe Tennessee.

All of this of course assumes Mayo/Covington can replicate last year’s defense without either Belichick which I’m somewhat skeptical of.
 

DJnVa

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I check every day praying for a new thread around a significant addition and it never comes. It's like the Red Sox offseason all over again
Make sure you let us know how disappointed you are every day though.
 

Rico Guapo

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The Patriots lack of splashy moves, relatively speaking, is a good thing IMO and people who are frustrated should look at their cap situation going forward. Yes they need talent but they have tremendous flexibility and ability to sign basically whoever they want next offseason (most cap room in the league by a significant margin), this rebuild will likely not be a quick turnaround and we should try to align our expectations accordingly.

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/2025/
https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/new-england-patriots/cap/2025/

The only bad contract they have on the books IMO is JJSS and even then he's very cuttable post 6/1 next year.
 

Cellar-Door

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The Patriots lack of splashy moves, relatively speaking, is a good thing IMO and people who are frustrated should look at their cap situation going forward. Yes they need talent but they have tremendous flexibility and ability to sign basically whoever they want next offseason (most cap room in the league by a significant margin), this rebuild will likely not be a quick turnaround and we should try to align our expectations accordingly.

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/2025/
https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/new-england-patriots/cap/2025/

The only bad contract they have on the books IMO is JJSS and even then he's very cuttable post 6/1 next year.
no advantage to post June 1 for Juju next year, no guarantees there so just the signing bonus, same money either way.
 
Oct 12, 2023
802
The Patriots lack of splashy moves, relatively speaking, is a good thing IMO and people who are frustrated should look at their cap situation going forward. Yes they need talent but they have tremendous flexibility and ability to sign basically whoever they want next offseason (most cap room in the league by a significant margin), this rebuild will likely not be a quick turnaround and we should try to align our expectations accordingly.

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/2025/
https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/new-england-patriots/cap/2025/

The only bad contract they have on the books IMO is JJSS and even then he's very cuttable post 6/1 next year.
Is there any reason to think they’ll use that money next year? If they’re not willing to pay A+ prices for B (or worse) talent, they’re just going to end up perpetually carrying tons of cap space over year to year

Other than Barmore, there isn’t anyone on the team who really needs to be retained (maybe Judon if he takes a team friendly deal) and free agency next year is likely going to be similar to this year (all the guys worth huge contracts get re-signed or tagged).
 

Cellar-Door

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The signing bonus get spread over two years in that case, no?
no, last year of his deal, you don't add an extra. This year is the year when you could do it, but it doesn't really save much money so only worth it in a weird case where you need the roster spot.
https://overthecap.com/salary-cap/new-england-patriots

So this year if they cut him post June 1 they save around a minimum, so basically nothing. Next year cutting him leaves a $2.6M charge and that's all.
 

Silverdude2167

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The Patriots lack of splashy moves, relatively speaking, is a good thing IMO and people who are frustrated should look at their cap situation going forward. Yes they need talent but they have tremendous flexibility and ability to sign basically whoever they want next offseason (most cap room in the league by a significant margin), this rebuild will likely not be a quick turnaround and we should try to align our expectations accordingly.

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/2025/
https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/new-england-patriots/cap/2025/

The only bad contract they have on the books IMO is JJSS and even then he's very cuttable post 6/1 next year.
They could sign anyone they wanted this year as well. The number of people who are ok with them not fixing any holes in FA is shocking with the way this roster has been talked about for the last year.

I guess everyone is fine with another 4-5 win season this coming year.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Is there any reason to think they’ll use that money next year? If they’re not willing to pay A+ prices for B (or worse) talent, they’re just going to end up perpetually carrying tons of cap space over year to year

Other than Barmore, there isn’t anyone on the team who really needs to be retained (maybe Judon if he takes a team friendly deal) and free agency next year is likely going to be similar to this year (all the guys worth huge contracts get re-signed or tagged).
What possible evidence do we have that they are not willing to spend? Calvin Ridley? There is absolutey zero reason to believe they are going to accumulate cap space one week into FA. The draft injects hundreds of new players into the league, creates trade opportunities, and re-ignites free agency. Let’s pump the brakes just a little. The Patriots can’t control the draft. They can control what they do after it when they know what business they have left to do.

They committed $92 million in cash and $28 million in potential incentives on business that needed to get done. They tried for Ridley but he signed a massive deal elsewhere and so now we see how the dust settles.
 

j44thor

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The Patriots lack of splashy moves, relatively speaking, is a good thing IMO and people who are frustrated should look at their cap situation going forward. Yes they need talent but they have tremendous flexibility and ability to sign basically whoever they want next offseason (most cap room in the league by a significant margin), this rebuild will likely not be a quick turnaround and we should try to align our expectations accordingly.

https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/cap/2025/
https://www.spotrac.com/nfl/new-england-patriots/cap/2025/

The only bad contract they have on the books IMO is JJSS and even then he's very cuttable post 6/1 next year.
Look at the cap space 25+ teams have next season. Also look at the potential FA list, Higgins might make it to FA in which case he will have his pick of at least 15 teams interested in his services, beyond that the best WR that might make it to FA is Jerry Jeudy and he probably only makes it if he has another disappointing season. The best defender currently on the list is arguably Barmore.
The 2024 FA class had some legit defensive building blocks at least, I don't think you can say the same about 25. It is going to be a weaker class and it will be more competitive as more teams have cap space. None of the marquee FAs such as Lamb, Jefferson, Aiyuk will sniff FA.
 

BaseballJones

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IMO, if they had signed Tyron Smith, their OL would have been pretty darned good in 2024, which is key to helping a QB - and an offense - perform well. And then if they had signed Mike Williams, that gives them a legit #1 receiver, which also helps a QB. They could easily have afforded both of those guys on short deals, mitigating the risk.

Then they could have used the draft to pick up Maye or Daniels who, with a good OL and much, much better WRs, would have had something to work with on offense. Then add OL and WR help in the draft with later picks.

With a pretty decent rookie season at QB, the 2024 Pats could have been legit contenders for a playoff spot with these moves, IMO.
 

NomarsFool

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What opportunities are there for the Pats to use some of their cap space on a contract another team needs to get rid of because they are over the cap? Are there some players out there who are good, but significantly overpaid, so we can use that money to add talent without giving up meaningful draft assets?

You have to use the cap somehow. We don't want the Pats giving up meaningful draft capital when they have so many holes. But, at the moment, they are basically running it back with a slight improvement at QB (in the near term), some better depth at WR, and weaker depth on the OL. That's not super exciting.
 

NortheasternPJ

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IMO, if they had signed Tyron Smith, their OL would have been pretty darned good in 2024, which is key to helping a QB - and an offense - perform well. And then if they had signed Mike Williams, that gives them a legit #1 receiver, which also helps a QB. They could easily have afforded both of those guys on short deals, mitigating the risk.

Then they could have used the draft to pick up Maye or Daniels who, with a good OL and much, much better WRs, would have had something to work with on offense. Then add OL and WR help in the draft with later picks.

With a pretty decent rookie season at QB, the 2024 Pats could have been legit contenders for a playoff spot with these moves, IMO.
This is my problem, and I don't have a big problem with what they've done, they're doing a lot of the right things. As of now they have a massive hole at QB, OT and WR. It's going to likely dictate on who they draft with the first 3 and they're stuck drafting on need vs BPA.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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IMO, if they had signed Tyron Smith, their OL would have been pretty darned good in 2024, which is key to helping a QB - and an offense - perform well. And then if they had signed Mike Williams, that gives them a legit #1 receiver, which also helps a QB. They could easily have afforded both of those guys on short deals, mitigating the risk.

Then they could have used the draft to pick up Maye or Daniels who, with a good OL and much, much better WRs, would have had something to work with on offense. Then add OL and WR help in the draft with later picks.

With a pretty decent rookie season at QB, the 2024 Pats could have been legit contenders for a playoff spot with these moves, IMO.
Williams is still on the table, potentially. Big expenditures for one-year rentals make no sense for this team. I understand reasonable minds can differ, but I just don’t see any way that Allen or Smith made sense for this team. Use cap space to get control for future years. For the stop gap guys, they already spent $8-$12 on Brissett and now $4 million on Osborn. $23 million for Allen or $8 to $21 million on Smith rentals would be too much for me. Let’s see how things play out now. It really feels like people forget that lots of business gets done outside the first FA week.

If one’s attitude is spend it all to try to get to 10-7 (edit) this year and worry about next year next year, they have the cap. That is not unreasonable. But there is no reason to make that call before the draft when the only guys we are talking about other than Ridley were mostly rentals.

To me, the one that may have gotten away is not Smith but Jonah Williams though I have no idea if he is good or worth what Arizona is paying him.
 

Van Everyman

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All the consternation or handwringing about FA is weird to me. I mean, I get it -- the team had a horrible year in 2023 and jettisoned the greatest coach ever, etc. But the FO locked down the current players on the roster who they thought were cornerstones and is going to try to build through the draft for most of the rest.

I do get what @BaseballJones is saying about what guys like Tyron Smith and Mike Williams would mean to a young QB's development -- but I get the sense that Wolf et al are trying not to clog the roster up with guys who are stopgap talents on their back 9. I don't see this as much as a "OH MY GOD, THEY ARE SO UNTALENTED" issue as they are looking to get a new system up and running under Van Pelt and need to see how guys perform in that system and what the holes are. I'm also not 100% sure whether they are using the #3 pick to draft a QB or starting Brissett.

In general, while I understand wanting a greater influx of talent, it seems the team is keeping its options open instead of throwing cash around to "get a #1 receiver" (who is likely an overpaid #2 or 3) or an LT to "protect QB-to-be-named-later's blind side." Yes, inherently it puts a lot of pressure on drafting well. But compared to paying top dollar for past meh performance, honestly, I'm ok with the former. I'd much rather they be building a little more slow and steady and getting the pieces in place than signing a bunch of dudes, capping out at a first round playoff loss and having to start over 3 or 4 years from now.
 

Jimbodandy

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All the consternation or handwringing about FA is weird to me. I mean, I get it -- the team had a horrible year in 2023 and jettisoned the greatest coach ever, etc. But the FO locked down the current players on the roster who they thought were cornerstones and is going to try to build through the draft for most of the rest.

I do get what @BaseballJones is saying about what guys like Tyron Smith and Mike Williams would mean to a young QB's development -- but I get the sense that Wolf et al are trying not to clog the roster up with guys who are stopgap talents on their back 9. I don't see this as much as a "OH MY GOD, THEY ARE SO UNTALENTED" issue as they are looking to get a new system up and running under Van Pelt and need to see how guys perform in that system and what the holes are. I'm also not 100% sure whether they are using the #3 pick to draft a QB or starting Brissett.

In general, while I understand wanting a greater influx of talent, it seems the team is keeping its options open instead of throwing cash around to "get a #1 receiver" (who is likely an overpaid #2 or 3) or an LT to "protect QB-to-be-named-later's blind side." Yes, inherently it puts a lot of pressure on drafting well. But compared to paying top dollar for past meh performance, honestly, I'm ok with the former. I'd much rather they be building a little more slow and steady and getting the pieces in place than signing a bunch of dudes, capping out at a first round playoff loss and having to start over 3 or 4 years from now.
Yeah pretty much agree with this (except that drafting the QB is #3 is definitely happening IMO).

I suppose that it's our bad honestly. We shouldn't be shocked that this place goes nuclear whenever some name brand WR is available but goes elsewhere. Some folks simply believe that wide receivers that they've heard of already are basically the only thing that matters in the NFL. If you have them, you win multiple super bowls. If you don't, you're punting on winning super bowls. No way to dissuade this set--none. Calvin Ridley is the new Mookie Betts, etc.

This is not a one-year rebuild. Being aggressive in FA and the draft doesn't mean "sign shiny object". And it doesn't mean that we fill every hole with one offseason. If anything, given where we are on the development curve, we shouldn't be signing anyone for short years unless it's super short money.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Bedard had an article today comparing the Pats under Eliot Wolf to the Packers when Ron Wolf took over a Packers team that was coming off 6-10 and 4-12 seasons.

Ron's strategy then was to hang on to players on the current team who were able to compete and then trying to bring in stars who would up the talent level.

If we assume Eliot is doing something similar, the moves make sense.

My big concern is that, one way or another, they use all of their cap space productively. If some of it goes to Barmore on an extension instead of a flashy FA signing, that would be fine with me.
 

Van Everyman

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Given that they’ve brought in zero stars and signed a bunch of their own guys so far, isn’t that scenario more probable than not?
 

BaseballJones

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Apparently Stephon Gilmore is open to returning to the Pats. He’s no longer elite but he’s still pretty good, and at his age he probably won’t command a huge contract. I’d love to have him back.
 
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NomarsFool

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Dec 21, 2001
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Williams is still on the table, potentially. Big expenditures for one-year rentals make no sense for this team. I understand reasonable minds can differ, but I just don’t see any way that Allen or Smith made sense for this team. Use cap space to get control for future years. For the stop gap guys, they already spent $8-$12 on Brissett and now $4 million on Osborn. $23 million for Allen or $8 to $21 million on Smith rentals would be too much for me. Let’s see how things play out now. It really feels like people forget that lots of business gets done outside the first FA week.
I guess I just haven't really seen how using the cap to get control for future years works in football, nor have I seen the Pats really do that too much. Of course, they shouldn't be going out and signing someone to a 4 year, $100 million deal that will hurt them in the future. But, I don't really see the harm in spending on a one year rental in a position of need. For example, the Pats need a LT. That's undeniable. It's hard to get someone in the draft that can start at LT on day 1. You've got to typically use a pretty high pick to get somebody like that. I would have no problem with the Pats signing someone to a short term deal at LT, and then draft someone in Round 2 or 3 that would be a bit more of a project to play LT in 2025. At the moment, the OL is worse than it was in 2023 because we no longer have Brown. That's a problem.
 

Curt S Loew

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Apparently Stephon Gilmore is open to returning to the Pats. He’s no longer elite but he’s still pretty good, and at his age he probably won’t command a huge contract. I’d love to have him back.
is there a link? I'm sure he's open to just about every team at this point in his career if he wants to continue playing.
 

j-man

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Dec 19, 2012
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the best corse of action for u is to trade up 1 spot and get J Daniels he remind me of L Jackson u guys couild win 9 games next year with him otherwise make a deal with minn for 11 and 23 and draft m penix jr with u 2nd rd pick
 

Curt S Loew

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the best corse of action for u is to trade up 1 spot and get J Daniels he remind me of L Jackson u guys couild win 9 games next year with him otherwise make a deal with minn for 11 and 23 and draft m penix jr with u 2nd rd pick
I do not think it's worth trading up for Daniels. We may get him anyway. You don't give up assets for an uncertainty like that.

Your other option is definitely worth considering. You might be able to get Penix(23) and His WR Odunze(11). I don't think Penix will be there at 34. However I do not think they go that way. I wouldn't. Take the QB that's there at 3.
 

Rico Guapo

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the best corse of action for u is to trade up 1 spot and get J Daniels he remind me of L Jackson u guys couild win 9 games next year with him otherwise make a deal with minn for 11 and 23 and draft m penix jr with u 2nd rd pick
Penix struggles against pressure and thats playing behind the best line in college last year with excellent WRs, the Pats OL alone will get him killed.
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,616
Bringing Gilmore back as a (needed) outside CB and, more importantly, to spend at least one season mentoring Gonzalez, teaching him the most effective away to watch/study film, be a professional, let your play do the talking, etc... seems like an EXCELLENT use of cap space. Give him 2 years 24 mill and extend Barmore and Dugger.