Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston takes a look at some of the Patriots offseason options at the defensive position in his most recent article.
Interestingly enough, Reiss mentions that recently released DE Will Smith “jumps near the top of the list as a potential lower-to-moderate-cost pass-rusher of interest” for the Patriots.
Reiss adds that signing Smith would not impact their odds of receiving compensatory picks in the upcoming draft.
New Orleans elected to release Smith and take the cap savings of $11.5 million in cap space in order to get in better financial standing.
Smith, 32, sat out the 2013 season after having been placed on the injured reserve with a torn ACL that he suffered during the team’s third preseason game. It’s hard to say what kind of market he’ll have in the coming weeks, as veteran players who have been released in recent years haven’t fared that well. With this is mind, it seems conceivable that Smith could settle for a one-year deal just above or close to the veteran’s minimum.
The Patriots have shown a tendency to take a chance on veteran players in the past, so it seems like a possibility.