Free agency can be overwhelming when you’re just a simple one-team blogger like me. There are just so many names, so many salaries, so many performances to take account of, that it’s hard to find great external fits.
And let’s face it, the Patriots don’t rely on early free agency for the core of their team.
Instead, they fill out the periphery, usually with depth players on short term deals like they did with Chris Hogan, Chris Long and Shea McClellin last season, or Jabaal Sheard in 2015. But really, they’re just as likely to find contributors during training camp or in season like Rob Ninkovich, Kyle Van Noy, Akeem Ayers, etc. as they are at this time of year.
Still, the Pats have a ton of cap space this season, and while the priorities remain signing their own players like Dont’a Hightower, Malcolm Butler and others first, the opportunity is definitely there in 2017 to make a splash in free agency and really improve the team.
Here are five players that I think are good fits and could be viable candidates to fill some of the holes the Patriots have.