Linebacker Trent Murphy is one of the rapidly dwindling number of players on our Top 100 free agent list that has yet to agree to a deal this week, but he’s generating interest ahead of the official start of free agency on Wednesday afternoon.
Jenna Laine of ESPN.com reports that the Patriots and Buccaneers are both among the final three teams bidding for Murphy’s services. The third team is unnamed, but a report on Sunday had the Redskins trying to hold onto the player they picked in the second round of the 2014 draft.
Murphy missed all of last season after tearing his ACL, but he showed good pass rushing ability in his first three seasons. Murphy had 15.5 sacks over those campaigns, culminating in a nine-sack 2016 season.
The Buccaneers ranked last in the league in sacks last season, so the need for help in that area is obvious. The Patriots were in the middle of the pack, but their late-season addition of James Harrison illustrates the constant need to find ways to create pressure off the edge.