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Report: Patriots interested in tackle Winston
The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed on the PFW Blog represent those of individual authors, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions or policies of the New England Patriots organization, front office staff, coaches and executives. Authors' views are formulated independently from any inside knowledge and/or conversations with Patriots officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.
According to a tweet from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, New England is among at least five teams – the Dolphins, Eagles, Chargers and Cowboys are the others – interested in former Chiefs tackle Eric Winston. The 29-year-old veteran of seven previous NFL seasons is apparently in Miami today, where Schefter says “a deal could happen.”
The 6-7, 302-pound Winston has started all 16 games in each of the last six seasons. He spent last fall in Kansas City after signing a four-year, $22 million deal a year ago in free agency following his first six seasons as a third-round pick in Houston. But he was released by the Chiefs this offseason after a regime change, some believing that the zone blocker didn’t fit with Andy Reid’s preferred style of line play that utilizes powerful man blockers.
Winston was best known last season for his outspoken support of K.C. starter and former Patriots backup Matt Cassel, after he believed the Arrowhead Stadium crowd cheered when the quarterback was injured.
As the market begins to settle at right tackle in the wake of Jake Long’s signing, it will be interesting to see if Vollmer returns to New England on a more team-friendly contract than the former second-team All-Pro was probably looking for when free agency opened. His history of back injuries may be a factor in him not finding a deal early in free agency, but might also make him a more financially-feasible, short-term risk for the team that drafted him in the second round.
Do you think the Patriots should re-sign Vollmer or look for another veteran such as Winston? Let us know with a comment below!