The New England patriots made two signings in the span of an hour, first landing Adrian Clayborn and then bringing Jeremy Hill aboard.
New England watched earlier this week as Nate Solder, Malcolm Butler, Dion Lewis and Danny Amendola went elsewhere in free agency. Apparently, head coach Bill Belichick is sick of seeing talent head out the proverbial door, leading to signings on Friday of defensive end Adrian Clayborn and running back Jeremy Hill.
Hill, 25, had 1,124 yards and nine rushing touchdowns in his rookie year of 2014, but has not been able to match that production. Last year, Hill was barely seen on the field with 116 rushing yards while Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard split time.
With Hill coming to New England, look for him to be a spare part who can rotate in and provide something in the passing game. In his four years with the Cincinnati Bengals, Hill caught 67 passes.
The contract is unknown at this point, but it would be shocking if Hill gets anything more than a one-year deal. Hill has been trending downward and the Patriots never pay running backs any real money, so look for this to be a short-term investment.
The Patriots always get the benefit of the doubt when they make an under-the-radar signing, but this is curious. New England still has Mike Gillisee and re-signed Rex Burkhead, so adding Hill makes little sense. While most teams go with a running back by committee approach, this might be going a bit too far.