New England Patriots: Veterans to Look Into Entering the Second Wave of Free Agency

With a load of talented veterans unsigned, Bill Belichick could target some of these individuals to prepare the New England Patriots for another Super Bowl run.

Now that free agent signings will not be counting against compensatory picks, the second wave of free agency has begun. There are still a number of talented players without a home, and with Bill Belichick always looking to improve his roster, don’t be surprised if the New England Patriots take a couple of flyers on some of these veterans.

Ndamukong Suh, DT –When Suh landed in Los Angeles last year, fear spread throughout the NFL about the interior tandem of Suh and Aaron Donald. While Suh played decently throughout the first part of the season, it wasn’t enough to earn a second year of a massive contract with the Rams. There is no way Suh earns another hefty pay-day this off-season but he still has a lot to offer and could earn a longer deal with a team after proving his worth on a one or two year deal. With free agent signing Mike Pennel slated to be a starting defensive tackle next year, the Patriots need serious help on the inside of the trenches.

Morris Claiborne, CB After being drafted by the Cowboys with the 6th overall pick in the 2012 Draft, Claiborne experienced ups and downs in Dallas before eventually landing with the Jets. Coach Belichick seems to enjoy poaching players from AFC East opponents, and Claiborne’s arrival would add to an already loaded secondary. With the coaching that Belichick provides, Claiborne could still tap into the potential that he had when he was the first defensive back off of the board in 2012.

Michael Crabtree, WR It’s no secret that the Patriots’ receiving core is currently lacking depth. New England is bringing back Julian Edelman and Phillip Dorsett, but otherwise, the options are slim. The Pats spent a first round pick on N’Keal Harry who should step in immediately, but bringing in a veteran could help the young receivers further their game. Crabtree is two years removed from a strong campaign in Oakland. With a year of switching between Joe Flacco and Lamar Jackson, Crabtree didn’t have many opportunities to show what he is still capable of. Paired with Tom Brady, Crabtree could quickly emerge as a starting receiver in Foxboro.

Jamie Collins, LB—Don’t call it a comeback, but more of a reunion – even though Collins might not be the force he formerly was in New England, that doesn’t mean the Pats shouldn’t bring him back. The versatile linebacker can pass-rush and cover in the backfield. With the mentoring of Jerod Mayo, a former Patriot linebacker and favorite of Belichick, Collins should be able to upgrade his play to the professional level he maintained while in New England. Even if Collins can’t contribute as he used to, his presence combined with Dont’a Hightower’s would create an ideal environment to groom Ja’Whaun Bentley.

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