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News Blitz 3/16: AFC East foes adding firepower

Today's News Blitz includes a variety of New England-related tidbits from around the web in the midst of NFL free agency.

While things have slowed down a bit from the frenzy of the first few days of free agency, NFL news continues to flow.

Today that includes a look back at some of the Patriots stories from over the weekend as New England's offseason rolls along.

The Boston Globe's Football Notes detail how the Patriots AFC East competition has improved early this offseason. Columnist Chris Gasper focuses on just how popular the NFL has become, even in the offseason. The Globe also breaks down New England re-signing Alan Branch.

The Boston Herald notes that DeMaurice Smith was re-elected as the head of the NFLPA. The Herald also relays the Branch signing, while the Patriots wait to see what Vince Wilfork's future may hold. The Herald's Sunday Notes say that Darrelle Revis is the Patriots biggest rival.

The Providence Journal also delves into the various moves AFC East foes have made trying to catch the Patriots in the division race. passes along notes from Patriots owner Robert Kraft's appearance at a St. Patrick's Day breakfast over the weekend.

With former Bills and 49ers free agent receiver Stevie Johnson reportedly visiting New England breaks down how the veteran might fit into the Patriots offense. The site also notes that Wilfork is indeed visiting with the Texans as the veteran defensive tackle ponders his future. thinks that the Patriots need to "find a way" to keep Johnson from leaving Foxborough until he signs with the team. The site's Patriots Insider, Tom E. Curran, ranks the various moves that New England's AFC opponents have made this offseason. And despite reportedly visiting Gillette, Reggie Bush signed with the 49ers. resets the rundown of Patriots free agents, a story that includes a nice photo of a Patriots Football Weekly cover from Super Bowl night! WEEI's 10-pack of Sunday notes begins with the same ol' Rex Ryan. lists Wilfork and Stevan Ridley **among the best** **remaining free agents** at this point in the offseason.

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