The New England Patriots have $61 million in cap space before free agency even begins. This is bullshit.
Impending Free Agents
Alan Branch, DL
A former Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman who has now won two rings with the Patriots, I don’t see how Branch has a reunion with Pete Carroll. He’s 32 and could probably get a decent final contract somewhere.
Martellus Bennett, TE
The Bennett Bros together on the Seahawks would be a dream come true but much like a True Detective season two that revisited the same characters from season one, some dreams aren’t meant to come true. Seattle has no room in their budget for two expensive tight ends.
LeGarrette Blount, RB
He’s not a future Seahawk, but I’m really curious to see what kind of contract he gets this year. I don’t see how New England could possibly re-sign him, so who does, and how much do they give a one-dimensional touchdown vulture?
Jabaal Sheard, DE
Still only 27, I wonder if Sheard could still a huge contract this year. He’s coming off a Super Bowl win and he’s got a unique athletic profile, but Sheard is not a complete player worthy of $18 million guaranteed. It’ll be an interesting situation to watch develop.
Michael Floyd, WR
Floyd is not a good receiver. If he was, the Cardinals would have forgiven his DUI. I say that as a person who thought that Floyd was one of the very best prospects in the 2012 draft. It just isn’t working out.
Dont’a Hightower, LB
The Pats did not give Hightower the franchise tag and will let him test free agency. His stats won’t stand out to you but Hightower is considered one of the best defensive players in the NFL right now.
Logan Ryan, CB
Ryan is expected to command more than $10 million annually. He’s not an elite cover corner but is big, versatile, and will track the opposition’s number one receiver. Without many starting corners hitting the market, Ryan will be a popular guy at the free agent prom.
Greg Scruggs, TE
Just a note for the former Seattle draft pick. Scruggs moved from DE to TE and should land somewhere, but on a super low-key deal.
Duron Harmon, CB
Harmon is incredibly versatile and could be one of the sneakier sleeper signings of free agency. He can play corner or safety, the former Rutgers player fits the athletic profile for Pete Carroll but he could price himself out of that range if enough teams throw themselves in the ring, which I expect they will.
Sebastian Vollmer, OT
The 32-year-old tackle missed all of last season, which might make him a starting caliber offensive lineman who is actually affordable in Seattle’s ultra-tight lineman budget. I give it a definite “maybe” for the Seahawks at this point.
Others: RB Brandon Bolden, RB James Develin, LB Barkevious Mingo, DE Chris Long
Notes: Mingo has not even been a starter in this league other than 2014 when the Cleveland Browns just didn’t have any other choice other than to pretend like they didn’t make a horrible pick. But would Seattle be interested in a player with his athletic profile? Sure, at a ridiculously cheap cost. I’d entertain the shit out of that.
Cap Casualty Candidates
Danny Amendola, WR
He’s the only player in NFL history who has the word “Amend” in his name. And now the Patriots will work to amend the deal they made with him in 2013 and will save some money for 2017 by his release. Amendola is a decent player. He probably signs back with New England on a uber-cheap deal.
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB
Not notable as far as going to Seattle, Garoppolo could wind up with the San Francisco 49ers or Arizona Cardinals, I guess. I still think the most likely scenario is that he stays with the Patriots, but second-place scenario belongs to the Browns. Probably not coming to the NFC West.
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