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Patriots.com News Blitz -3/13/2012
Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com gives his thoughts on all of the current Patriots who will become free agents when contracts expire at 4 p.m. ET today. Players of note include DE Mark Anderson, WR Deion Branch, DE Andre Carter, C Dan Connolly, RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis, and C Dan Koppen.
Mike Reiss also writes that Bill Belichick is typically unpredictable when it comes to spending on free agents. He explains that it wouldn't be shocking if the Patriots begin to explore the possibility of "reeling one of the biggest fish in the free-agent pond" in DE/OLB Mario Williams. "That's not to say it will happen, but it highlights how in Bill Belichick's 12 years in charge of the Patriots' football operation, he has been anything but predictable in free agency. That's how he likes it."
Shalise Manza Young of The Boston Globe reports that former Patriots WR Randy Moss has returned to the NFL, agreeing to a one-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night. In a conference call with San Francisco reporters late last evening, Moss spoke about wanting to get back into football. "...I really didn't know who was going to try me out, who was going to hook me up. So I had a tryout with the Saints and came here to San Francisco a week later."he said. "Basically, the organization, Coach Harbaugh and general manager and owner pulled the trigger. So, like I said, I look forward to coming out here to the Bay Area and giving the 49ers fans, organization, something to rave about this season. I look forward to playing." The 49ers will play the Patriots in Foxborough next season.
Ian R. Rapoport of The Boston Herald lists five possible defensive targets that the Patriots may look at during free-agency. The players include DE/OLB Mario Williams, DB Richard Marshall, DE Jeremy Mincey, DE John Abraham, and DT Luis Castillo. In writing about DE John Abraham, Rapoport notes, "A Bill Belichick favorite from way back, the veteran stalwart could be this year's Andre Carter."
Christopher Price of WEEI.com takes a look at the 10 biggest questions entering NFL free agency. One of his questions discusses the course of action for the Patriots. Price writes, "There are some intriguing fits for this team that wouldn’t break the bank, including Brandon Lloyd and Richard Marshall, while Mike Wallace remains a big-ticket possibility that would also cost them a draft pick."
Kirk Minihane of WEEI.com writes that, according to a report from Adam Caplan, the Patriots will use a second-round restricted free agent tender on quarterback Brian Hoyer.
Jeff Howe of NESN.com reports that unrestricted free agent Gary Guyton will look to seek opportunities elsewhere when free agency begins, according to sources. Howe writes, "a change of scenery might be exactly what Guyton needs to get his career back on track."
Tom E. Curran of CSNNE.com reports that there has been "dialogue" between free-agent RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis and the Patriots, but an agreeable offer hasn't emerged. Green-Ellis rushed for 667 yards on 181 carries last season. "Given the Patriots have gotten excellent running game production from overlooked players like Green-Ellis, they may be reluctant to get in a bidding war for a player who is good but not irreplaceable," writes Curran.