AFC Notes: Colts, Jets, Patriots


  • Mike Kaye notes that because he has a background with Colts’ HC Frank Reich, Eagles’ TE Zach Ertz could be added to a potential QB Carson Wentz trade to sweeten the deal.
  • Colts’ LB Darius Leonard doesn’t want any riff-raff on his team and tweeted the following statement to any free agents who have plans to join the Colts this offseason: “Free agents!! If y’all are thinking about coming to the Colts and play defense just know that we don’t want you if you don’t play hard, run to the ball, make plays, or not willing to sacrifice yourself for ya teammate to make the play! Don’t care how big or little ya name is!”


  • Albert Breer of SI writes that Jets’ GM Joe Douglas has taken calls for QB Sam Darnold, but is remaining patient to see where the chips fall with prospects such as BYU’s Zach Wilson, Ohio State’s Justin Fields, and North Dakota State’s Trey Lance.
  • Breer theorizes that the Jets may make the second pick available and keep Darnold, which could cause a frenzy among teams such as Carolina, Washington, and Indianapolis.
  • Other options include New York drafting Oregon T Penei Sewell and putting the Dolphins’ in the hot seat with the third-overall pick, or moving on from Darnold prior to the draft and taking a quarterback with their selection.


  • Mike Reiss of ESPN thinks that whatever happens with Jets’ QB Sam Darnold will have an impact on the Patriots when it comes to who will be their quarterback in 2021.
  • If Darnold ends up going to the 49ers, it could mean that New England sees the return of QB Jimmy Garoppolo as their starter next season.
  • Reiss adds that Patriots’ HC Bill Belichick and his staff members are likely already investing themselves in the potential of these situations.
  • According to Reiss, there remains a strong chance that Raiders’ QB Marcus Mariota becomes an option for New England in 2021, and his reasonable contract would still allow for the Patriots to add yet another quarterback to their roster
  • Reiss makes it seem unlikely that the Patriots would grab a quarterback in the first round of the draft, as ESPN’s Todd McShay has five of them being selected in the first twelve picks.
  • This scenario opens up the Patriots’ draft spot at No. 15 for them to get a strong edge rusher, or if they are still desperate, a lower-tier quarterback from this year’s class such as Florida QB Kyle Trask or Wake Forest’s Jamie Newman.
  • According to Reiss, his hunch is that the Patriots will not use the franchise tag on G Joe Thuney.
  • There is also speculation that the Patriots are among the teams preferred by DE J.J. Watt, yet Reiss is not convinced as the team is currently not considered a playoff contender.

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