Patriots Free Agent Targets
The Patriots head into NFL free agency with a ton of cap space and are set up nicely to make a number of significant moves.
I’m going to give you sixteen players that the Patriots should target in free agency based on need, fit and cost. The Patriots will splurge every once in a while so I included a couple consensus top 25 free agents but their wheelhouse is typically that next tier so most of these players come from there. Luckily for the Patriots, this year’s free agent class is pretty deep and they should be able to add a couple really good players:
Matt Milano, LB - One of the best LB’s available in free agency and would fill a major need for the Patriots. The former BC Eagle is a smart, versatile LB that could play a number of LB spots in the Patriots defense. When the Patriots make a splash in free agency it is typically on defense so Milano is a prime candidate.
Curtis Samuel, WR - The first word that comes to mind when you think of Samuel is versatility. He can line up in the slot, out wide or even in the backfield. He seems like just the type of skill player Josh McDaniels would love to use in his offense. He is explosive and dynamic, he’s 24 years old and has gotten better every year he’s been in the league.
Hunter Henry, TE - Arguably the Patriots biggest need. Henry feels like the ideal Patriot, he’d really be the perfect fit. He can catch the ball, he can block, he’s a solid all-around tight end. He’s just entering the prime of his career and in the right system can be one of the top 2 or 3 TE’s in this league in the coming years.
Romeo Okwara, DE - Sneaky great fit. If there was an under-the-radar guy to break the bank for, it might be Okwara. He reminds me of Chandler Jones, has almost identical size. Played in Detroit under Patricia so he knows the defense. Had 10 sacks in 2020 and feels like he’s just getting started. One of my favorite free agents on the market this year.
David Andrews, C - One of the few Patriots free agents I’d like to see the team resign. Andrews is a great center, leader, captain, great guy. Would hate to see the Patriots lose him.
DaQuan Jones, DT - Big, physical defensive tackle that could really help the Patriots struggling run defense. Jones did a lot of the dirty work for the Titans defense but didn’t put up a ton of stats, sounds like a Patriots defensive lineman.
Jonnu Smith, TE - Smith is right up there with Henry when it comes to best TE available. He has good size, he’s athletic and has improved as a blocker. He’s a physical receiver who knows how to get open. There are people that think he’s a better fit than Henry, I’m not so sure about that but he is a good player
Reggie Ragland, LB - Ideal size for a Patriots LB, 6-2 252. Played under Nick Saban at Alabama, played in the Patriots defense in Detroit last year. Hasn’t exactly lived up to his potential so far in the NFL but is still young and has talent, New England could be the best place for him to excel.
Derek Wolfe, DL - I’ve always been a fan of Wolfe. He brings intensity and physicality. He is very good against the run. He would be your classic veteran defensive lineman signing by the Patriots that seems to happen every year, literally every year, think of players like Adrian Clayborn, Chris Long, Jabaal Sheard, Andre Carter, I could go on forever.
Mitchell Trubisky, QB - I hope the Patriots find their next QB on the trade market or in the draft but since it’s a major need I’ll give you the one free agent QB that I’d be in favor of signing. Trubisky was the 2nd overall pick for a reason, he’s got the talent. He just needs the right coach and system to get the most out of him. He is far from my first choice but is one of the best QB options in free agency.
Corey Davis, WR - I’ve had Davis on my radar as a potential future Patriot for years now. He reminds me of a Patriots WR, guys like Brandon Lafell and Chris Hogan. He isn’t great at anything but he’s good at everything, he’s just a solid receiver who would be a nice addition to the Patriots.
Miles Killebrew, S/ST - Is there any doubt that the Patriots are going to target an elite special teams player? Killebrew will probably be the first guy signed by the Patriots and way overpaid, it’s basically a done deal, right? If signing Killebrew can finally rid us of Brandon Bolden, I’m all for it.
Kendrick Bourne, WR - Bourne has developed into a solid WR. Wasn’t a huge part of the 49ers offense but was consistent when he got an opportunity. High ceiling, could really breakout if given the opportunity. Is a solid red zone receiver.
Larry Ogunjobi, DL - Really good run defender. Flashes but isn’t consistent as a pass rusher. Not a full time starter but logged a lot of snaps over the last couple years in Cleveland. Could be a good rotational defensive lineman that could help improve the run defense.
Tyus Bowser, Edge - Versatile edge player, good pass rusher, good in coverage. Very good athlete, could play all over the front seven. Maybe not an every down player but a solid situational edge player.
Jason Verrett, CB - If the Patriots trade away Stephon Gilmore they might need to add some CB depth. Verrett has dealt with injuries throughout his career but stayed healthy and had a breakout year in 2020. Is a strong man-to-man corner who shows flashes of a shutdown corner.