Patriots most pressing needs

The Patriots have likely started getting to the business of trying to hammer out contracts and contract extensions and will be prepping to address their team needs in the draft and free agency. The question is: What is the team’s most pressing needs?

Here is my opinion. Cast your vote in the poll to the left and feel free to comment.

1. Linebacker – Whether it’s inside or outside, the Patriots really only have Jerod Mayo as a legitimate starter. Obviously, a passing rushing outside linebacker would be tops.

2. Running back* – Maroney hasn’t proved that he can handle the load, BJGE is a role player, and the rest are nearing the end of the careers. The Pats need a top flight RB to take the pressure off of Brady and eat clock to wrap up a game.

3. Wide Receiver – Wes Welker will likely miss the beginning if not half of the season, which leaves only Randy Moss as a proven receiver. Even with Welker, the Pats were too predictable and had no reliable third target. To break the offensive stagnancy, a good third option is necessary.

Depth at other positions is also necessary. The only positions that are set are quarterback and safety.

* If the Patriots lose Leigh Bodden to free agency, I would put corner back into my top 3. I anticipate Darius Butler to earn a starting job, and Bodden would lock down the other spot – provided he remains.

What do you think?

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  • Warren

    Good comments, though I might put WRs over RBs. This team can’t compete with Aikens and Edelman. (Aikens doesn’t even belong on the roster.) Breaston would be perfect (they should’ve drafted him in the first place), but he’s an RFA. Tate will help if he can come back, but they drafted him mainly for kick returns. They should draft Gilyard, who can do everything, and try to trade for someone like Harry Douglas, who is a zone breaker just like Deon Branch (he’s even from Louisville). Mark Clayton is also available via free agency. Brady is better off with a bunch of good WRs (say a combination of Moss, Welker, Gilyard, Clayton, Edelman, Tate, and Douglas) than one or two great ones (see the 2003-04 championship seasons). As for safety, they’re obviously set at SS, but I don’t like Sanders much. Chung might work out, but Atogwe of the Rams would be perfect for the FS job. I agree on Butler. Like him. But, if they don’t resign Bodden they’re in trouble. And the linebackers are terrible. This team can’t start someone like Pierre Woods and call themselves contenders. I don’t see much out there. They’d have to draft someone, or maybe settle for someone like Cato June or Keith Bullock for a season. Two big reasons they’ve been successful (besides Brady) has been depth at WR and LB. It’s not a good sign that this is where they’re most lacking.

  • jamie

    Looking back on my ranking I think I probably should have put WR ahead of RB. In terms of free agent LBs, I have Karlos Dansby at the top of my list and Antonio Pierce was just released by the Giants. He’s a good veteran leader to add to the team as the team transitions to younger linebackers, provided the neck injury isn’t an issue.