Patriots refrain from signing undrafted free agents, for now

Baltimore Ravens v New England Patriots
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When the draft ends, NFL teams commence a land rush for undrafted rookies. This year, the Patriots have not participated in what otherwise is a knee-jerk ritual.

Mike Reiss of ESPN.com explains the reasons for the decision to wait.

First, uncertainty regarding the pandemic has prompted the Patriots to remain at 82 players on the roster. Last year, the NFL and NFLPA gave teams the option to proceed with a split squad (if taking 90 to camp) or a single roster (if taking only 80). The Patriots opted for 80; they had to cut some undrafted free agents to get to that number. Some of them, as Reiss notes, had guaranteed money in their contract.

Second, the pool of undrafted players is more shallow this year, because fewer total players signed with agents.

Per Reiss, coach Bill Belichick has said that the team will invite potential undrafted free agents on a tryout basis later in the offseason. For now, the delay primarily seems to trace to the question of whether teams will have to make the same 80 vs. 90 decision when camp opens.

16 responses to “Patriots refrain from signing undrafted free agents, for now

  1. Every year 10 or so ‘Gems’ are discovered. This might be the year that there way more than that. Maybe way less. Parcells said it best and to paraphrase “I spend 80% of my time on the bottom 10 players of the roster.” Yup. A large percentage are locked in. Anyone who has played or coached HS, college or professional anything, knows this.

    Since the Patriots have a larger than amount of game changing free agents and a new QB, a lingering pandemic (to say it mildly) and in a down year financially, it actually seems prudent if not intelligent to consolidate your time and resources. Is that 1 in 100 going to make a difference? They can plug and play other teams outcasts. James Harrison was outcast how many times?

    PS: Not a Patriot fanboy. From NY…

  2. Sorry, this makes zero sense. BB is just trying to be a dink, as usual because he lost some pull in the organization. A rookie FA has made the team every year since 2004. Now that he has to collaborate on the draft, he has an excuse to blame someone else if the rookies fail. I’m a Pats fan, but I believe the reports that BB has gotten lazy when it comes to building the team in the last several years and this shows it. Too much time involved with finding diamonds in the rough and it would be the scouts who do the dirty work instead of him. Now all the top rookie FA’s have already been signed, so when one doesn’t make the team this year, he can blame the scouts. the 80 man roster and guaranteed money is BS. It’s very little cash and most of these guys get cut anyway, but that doesn’t mean the team shouldn’t try. Every other team is trying, but the grumpy old coach just has to be a dink whenever possible.

  3. I’m of the firm belief every mistake BB makes is just him being smarter than everyone else.

  4. touchback6 says:
    May 4, 2021 at 12:36 pm
    I’m of the firm belief every mistake BB makes is just him being smarter than everyone else.

    I am a firm believer that with out Brady BB will never win a another Super Bowl.

  5. I’m of the firm belief that Brady is no longer around to make BB’s mistakes look like a genius move. Now everyone will see them for what they have always been…mistakes.

  6. I’m a firm believer the Patriots & BB STILL OWN lots of real estate in the minds of many out there….as Mr. Kraft has said, Jealousy & Envy are incurable diseases….. looks like he was correct yet again!!!

  7. kissbillsrings says:
    May 4, 2021 at 1:05 pm
    I’m a firm believer the Patriots & BB STILL OWN lots of real estate in the minds of many out there….as Mr. Kraft has said, Jealousy & Envy are incurable diseases….. looks like he was correct yet again!!!

    13 1 Rate This

    ——————

    lol! I’m a firm believer you and I are right again along with TigerLilac and a handful of others.

    I’m also a big believer some of our fanbase are entitled turds who could
    never admit Tom Brady ever made a mistake, the media protected him, and created an ego monster, which is why BB had to walk.

    And, I’m also a big believer Ego Aaron Rodgers is following the same path, but NE is in much better position now to transition away from a primadonna with a loaded roster and phenomenal financial position, that the fear is rising yet again.

    Just look at the comments.

  8. gotitan says:
    May 4, 2021 at 1:04 pm
    How’d last season go, smartie pants?

    2 8 Rate This

    ————

    umm, how did it go for anyone? Were you in a coma in 2020?

    Go draft another dumb bust prospect and pat yourself on the back.

  9. This is just a clear indication of how much the team is suffering without having BRADY THERE TO THROW THE BALL! He could make the undrafted free agent signings look like Jerry Rice using three times the amount of Stick-Em.

  10. jjackwagon says:
    May 4, 2021 at 1:02 pm
    I’m of the firm belief that Brady is no longer around to make BB’s mistakes look like a genius move. Now everyone will see them for what they have always been…mistakes.

    ~~~

    But are they mistakes if they work out? Those players fit the needs the team had at the time. Who could have predicted that Brady would quit on the team and run down to Florida after forcing the owner to trade his replacement?

  11. batterystreet says:
    May 4, 2021 at 12:23 pm
    Sorry, this makes zero sense. BB is just trying to be a dink, as usual because he lost some pull in the organization. A rookie FA has made the team every year since 2004. Now that he has to collaborate on the draft, he has an excuse to blame someone else if the rookies fail. I’m a Pats fan, but I believe the reports that BB has gotten lazy when it comes to building the team in the last several years and this shows it. Too much time involved with finding diamonds in the rough and it would be the scouts who do the dirty work instead of him. Now all the top rookie FA’s have already been signed, so when one doesn’t make the team this year, he can blame the scouts. the 80 man roster and guaranteed money is BS. It’s very little cash and most of these guys get cut anyway, but that doesn’t mean the team shouldn’t try. Every other team is trying, but the grumpy old coach just has to be a dink whenever possible.
    =========================================================================
    What? Did you not read the article? It is plain to see. They also did this LAST year as well. Did BB do it last year, “to protest the draft strategy” THIS year? (the strategy that hadnt even been dreamed up yet). I will break it down for you. If they have over 80 players, they have to do a split squad. They dont want to do that. They didnt want to do that last year either (and that is why they didnt do that last year). What does that mean? Last year, they signed UDFA, and gave them guaranteed money. Then, the NFL said “if you have over 80 players you need to do split squad”. So Belichick cut some of those players, some with guaranteed money, in order to get down to 80 players. So this year, they will just stick with 80 and be done with it. But I guess that isnt juicy enough? Some people will reach for ANYTHING to make an unnecessary point or take an unnecessary shot.

  12. >> Sorry, this makes zero sense. BB is just trying to be a dink…
    ===================================================
    Quite the opposite. I think it is quite respectful to the UDFA players. If BB doesn’t think he can actually have them in camp, it is better for the players and also the player’s agent to not sign them. If I was an agent, and I was burned in this way, I would be pushing my players in the future to a different team that was at least willing to give them a look in camp once they have been signed. Or at least push them to a team that cuts my player because they found a better option, not because the team didn’t have its act together and signed more players than it could realistically carry.

  13. williamshatnerstoupee says:
    May 4, 2021 at 11:42 am
    Checkers.

    ——
    Imagine starting a season 11-0, then going one and done and seeing your QB cry, then having an excellent shot at last place in your division the season after that.

    Ouch! 🙂

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