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NFL Notes: Patriots, Rams, & Titans

Patriots

  • Ben Volin writes that there is “zero chance” of the Patriots using their franchise tag on any of their 10 unrestricted free agents this year.
  • Volin considers DB James Develin to be the only candidate to receive a restricted free agent offer from the Patriots this offseason.
  • Volin anticipates they’ll free up additional cap space after restructuring or releasing several players before the start of free agency.
  • Addressing TE Rob Gronkowski‘s contract will likely be the Patriots’ “first order of business,” according to Volin.
  • After that, Volin expects them to release veteran ILB Jerod Mayo, which would create $7 million in cap space.
  • Other cap casualities could include: WR Danny Amendola, RT Sebastian Vollmer, OL Marcus Cannon, WR Brandon LaFell, and TE Scott Chandler.
  • Volin lists DE Jabaal Sheard, LB Dont’a Hightower, LB Jamie Collins and CB Malcolm Butler as prime extension candidates.
  • Interestingly enough, Volin believes DE Chandler Jones is more likely to be cut, traded, or kept at his current price than signed to an extension.
  • Mike Reiss of ESPN writes that receivers Brandon Lafell and Danny Amendola are not guaranteed to return to the team in 2016 since their contracts do not correlate with their projected roles in the offense.
  • As for free agent receiver options, Reiss lists the Dolphins’ Rishard Matthews, 49ers’ WR Anquan Boldin, re-signing Leonard Hankerson, and the Bengals’ Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu as potential fits.

Rams

  • The Rams announced they have hired Skip Peete as their new running backs coach.
  • Peete has held previous coaching positions with the Bears, Cowboys, and Raiders.

Titans

Former Broncos GM Ted Sundquist wrote on B/R that the Titans’ ownership had already decided on Mike Mularkey being the team’s head coach, and that was the key factor in their selection of a new general manager.

It was also clear ownership wanted to stay the course inside the halls of the complex,” Sunquist said. “I was told, ‘We don’t want to blow up the building. This is a staff that works well together and avoids the internal politics and bickering that can and has brought down others in the past.'”

  • Jim Wyatt of the Titans’ official site expects the team to be “relatively” active during free agency, while he mentions the offensive line, wide receiver, running back, and “plenty” of positions on defense as spots that need to be addressed.
  • Wyatt does not see the Titans selecting Ohio State RB Ezekiel Elliot with the No. 1 overall pick, but is intrigued by Alabama RB Derrick Henry as a second-round pick.
  • For what it’s worth, Wyatt cannot see the Titans making a run at free agent RB Ray Rice.
  • Wyatt believes third-round rookie OL Jeremiah Poutasi will be moved from tackle to the guard position for 2016.

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