Dan Connolly has been a starting guard for the Patriots for the last five years, but he may be done.
Connolly, whose contract with the Patriots expired after last season, drew some interest from the Buccaneers and Seahawks in free agency but declined to sign with either. Now Mike Reiss of ESPN reports that Connolly may decide that he wants to go out having won a Super Bowl in his final game, and he could retire.
The offers from the Seahawks and Buccaneers may not have interested Connolly because he’d prefer not to move his family across the country. And according to Reiss, the Patriots haven’t shown a ton of interest. Connolly will turn 33 before the season starts and appears to have lost weight, which may indicate that he’s no longer focused on keeping himself at 305 pounds so that he can play in the NFL.
Connolly wouldn’t be a huge loss to the Patriots, who drafted guard Tre Jackson and who showed last year when trading Logan Mankins that they can get rid of a longtime guard and adjust perfectly well. But his retirement would represent a changing of the guard for New England.