Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com wonders what the market value might be for impending Patriots free agent Sebastian Vollmer. Reiss believes the 6-foot-8 offensive tackle could command up to $6-7 million per year given the fact that he has the ability to swing to the left or right side of the o-line. "The one concern for any suitor would be protection against potential injury given some of the questions about Vollmer's back coming out of college and some knee issues from 2012," adds Reiss. "Another factor to consider, as noted by Pro Football Talk, is that there are several tackles expected to hit the market which could drive down prices."
Field Yates of ESPNBoston.com gives an update on Brian Waters' roster status. "It seems unlikely at this point that veteran guard Brian Waters will suit up for the Patriots ever again," writes Yates. Waters sat out the entire 2012 season but is still under team control heading into 2013. "The team has the option to either trade or release Waters, or continue to stand pat like it did last season," he adds. "It would seem unlikely they would grant him his release if his desire is to sign with another team. A trade would seem more viable."
Jeff Howe of The Boston Herald reports that Patriots left guard Logan Mankins will not need surgery this offeason after a series of injuries limited him for parts of the 2012 season. "I'm excited," Mankins said. "At this time last year, I hadn't even had surgery yet, so I'll be training here pretty soon in a few weeks. It's going to be a great offseason for me, I think. My legs will get back to where they used to be. I'll be in the kind of shape I want to be when the season starts. I'm actually pretty excited about this offseason."
Mike Freeman of CBSSports.com believes that the Patriots will be more than ready to let Wes Welker walk this offseason. "They certainly won't use the franchise tag yet again at the cost of $11.4 million, or about $2 million more than what they paid him last year," writes Freeman. "There's a solid chance the two sides could work out a long-term deal but I'm hearing that looks increasingly less likely."
Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com writes that the Patriots could bring back Matt Cassel as a backup quarterback if he is released by the Chiefs this offseason. Reiss believes this scenario would boil down to whether or not the team decides to trade Ryan Mallett. "The idea would be that if a team would give the Patriots a valuable draft chip, it would be worth it because Mallett has just two years left on his contract and would leave anyway after the 2014 season to pursue a starting job," explains Reiss. "Making the trade would also align with the thought that Brady has more than two years remaining to play at a high level, and that the backup job could be filled through other avenues (e.g. Matt Cassel, if released by the Chiefs)."