According to a variety of reports, led by ESPN's Adam Schefter, Patriots free agent cornerback Aqib Talib has reached a blockbuster contract with the Broncos.
Talib reportedly will ink a six-year, $57 million contract in Denver that includes $26 million guaranteed. Considered one of the top overall free agents on the market, Talib's deal averages more than $9 million per season and surpasses the free agent pacts inked this spring by other cornerbacks such as Brent Grimes (Dolphins), Sam Shields (Packers), Vontae Davis (Colts) and Alterraun Verner (Bucs).
Talib's departure will leave a massive hole in the back end of the Patriots pass defense. Since joining New England at the trade deadline from the Bucs in 2012 he's not only been the Patriots No. 1 cornerback, but he's been tasked with manning up with opponents' top receiver on nearly a weekly basis. More often than not, he won those battles.
With Talib gone – leaving Alfonzo Dennard, Kyle Arrington and Logan Ryan as the top returning corners on the Patriots depth chart – the cornerback position immediately moves to the top of New England's list of needs moving forward in free agency and the draft.
What do you think of Talib's departure and the contract he received? Should the Patriots have paid top dollar to retain him? How can New England replace Talib? Let us know with a comment below!