The New England Patriots are trailing the Jacksonville Jaguars at the half of the 2017 AFC Championship. Here are the Patriots’ impending free agents.
No, the first half did not go according to plan for the New England Patriots in the 2017 AFC Championship game. New England trails the No. 3 Jacksonville Jaguars 14-10 at halftime in their own building. The Patriots are the No. 1 seed in the AFC, playing in their seventh-straight AFC title bout. They are looking to repeat as Super Bowl champions.
Though Jacksonville didn’t exactly end the half on a good note, the Jaguars have been in control of the game throughout it. The Jaguars have dominated time of possession and the Patriots might be without superstar tight end Rob Gronkowski after a helmet-to-helmet hit by Jaguars safety Barry Church.
Should this be the end of the line for the Patriots, New England might be losing a handful of key free agents. Here are the Patriots that will be hitting free agency this spring. You will notice how few of them were drafted by New England, or even drafted at all.
New England Patriots 2018 free agents
- Danny Amendola, wide receiver
- Johnson Bademosi, cornerback
- Brandon Bolden, running back
- Rex Burkhead, running back
- Malcolm Butler, cornerback
- Nate Ebner, free safety
- Cameron Fleming, offensive tackle
- Marquis Flowers, outside linebacker
- Geno Grissom, defensive end
- James Harrison, outside linebacker
- Ricky Jean Francois, defensive tackle
- Dion Lewis, running back
- Matthew Slater, wide receiver/special teams
- Nate Solder, left tackle
- LaAdrian Waddle, right tackle
Some of the bigger names include cornerback Malcolm Butler, slot receiver Danny Amendola, special teams ace Matthew Slater and left tackle Nate Solder. New England does a better job of scouting the NFL than any other team in the league. Other team’s trash usually ends up being the Patriots’ treasure.
It should be noted that two of their most important running backs in Dion Lewis and Rex Burkhead could stand to make big pay days this offseason. New England may not be able to keep both talented tailbacks. Lewis has been huge for the Patriots the last two years, while Burkhead has really come on in his first year in New England in 2017.
One thing to keep in mind though is how many of these guys were big names before coming to New England? Amendola was decent when he was playing for the St. Louis Rams. However, outside of long-time Pittsburgh Steelers pass rusher James Harrison, we know these guys for the roles on the Bill Belichick Patriots.
Maybe a team can land a former Patriot this offseason? Some of these guys will return in 2018, but look for new, more unproven guys to potentially take their spots in Foxborough.