AFC East Notes: Dolphins, Jets, Patriots

     

Dolphins

  • Ben Volin of the Boston Globe mentions Patriots S Devin McCourty had offers on the table from the Lions and Dolphins but chose New England. 
  • Dolphins RB Jordan Howard‘s two-year, $9.75 million deal includes base salaries of $1.75 million guaranteed and $4.975 million. Howard has a $3 million roster bonus due March 26 and a $250,000 annual Pro Bowl incentive. (Aaron Wilson)

Jets

  • According to Connor Hughes of the Athletic, offensive line is still atop the Jets’ draft board and if one of the top tackles are available to them at No. 11, he would be “stunned” if they didn’t draft one of them.
  • The Jets have been criticized for signing OT George Fant to a three-year, $30 million deal, but Hughes explains that he should be viewed as insurance in case all four of the tackles are off the board before the Jets on the clock.
  • Hughes identifies G Brian Winters, WR Josh Bellamy and CB Darryl Roberts as three potential cuts for the Jets, depending on whether they sign players at their respective positions.
  • As for free agent WR Robby Anderson, Hughes says there’s “radio silence” right now. According to Hughes, none of his sources have heard about a team making a legitimate run at signing Anderson and they don’t have an idea of the kind of salary he could end up securing.
  • One front-office official tells Hughes that if Anderson had the type of contract he thought he would get in free agency, he would have signed it on Wednesday.
  • Hughes believes the longer things play out for Anderson, the more it benefits the Jets.
  • While Jets LB Avery Williamson has been speculated as a potential cap casualty for a while, ESPN’s Rich Cimini says New York could take its time with that decision since LB C.J. Mosley coming off a groin injury. 

Patriots

  • Based on conversations he’s having with league sources, Ben Volin of the Boston Globe expects the Patriots to embark on a multi-year rebuild starting in 2020. 
  • New England’s personnel losses this offseason have been well-covered. While the Patriots did re-sign DBs Devin and Jason McCourty as well as STer Matthew Slater, Volin says that they were important to help HC Bill Belichick instill his culture to the next generation of players. 
  • Volin mentions Devin McCourty had offers on the table from the Lions and Dolphins but chose New England. 
  • Volin adds he gets the sense New England is much more likely to see what they have with 2019 fourth-round QB Jarrett Stidham and maybe bring in a veteran backup like Brian Hoyer than they are to trade or sign for Bengals QB Andy Dalton or Panthers QB Cam Newton.
  • Patriots LB Dont’a Hightower and OT Marcus Cannon are two veterans who could be traded or released, per Volin. 
  • Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller says that according to multiple sources, Belichick actually tried to trade Brady to the 49ers in 2017 when they inquired about QB Jimmy Garoppolo. However, Patriots owner Robert Kraft vetoed the deal per a source close to Belichick: “Kraft shut that s–t down fast. So, instead, Lynch gets Garoppolo, but Brady, Belichick and Kraft haven’t been the same since Tom learned that Bill was ready to get rid of him. And that lit a fire under his ass.”
  • Miller quotes other sources who believe that was the start of when Brady began planning his exit from New England, as he felt disrespected by his head coach. 
  • According to NFL Media’s Michael Giardi, the Patriots are unlikely to have an interest in QB Jameis Winston in free agency per a high-ranking team official.
  • Colts QB Jacoby Brissett has been mentioned in league circles as an option for the Patriots. (Sal Capaccio)
  • Patriots WR Damiere Byrd‘s one-year deal includes a $350,000 signing bonus, $1 million base salary and up to $900,000 in incentives based on receptions. (Field Yates)
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