New England Patriots Must Mind Their Cap Space

So far I’m loving this free agency period. Getting back Aqib Talib means Devin McCourty can stay at strong safety. Getting back Kyle Arrington means the nickel coverage is set. Alfonzo Dennard is likely to be ready Week 1, according to rumors. Sebastian Vollmer provides continuity along the offensive line, which is a very important component when it comes to protecting the quarterback. Adrian Wilson is an excellent strong safety who should see the field on run downs, provide veteran leadership, and effectively mentor Tavon Wilson. Tom Brady’s contract restructuring is yet another example of The Patriot Way, allowing the team much-needed freedom. Leon Washington takes care of the increasingly unfortunate Jeff Demps situation. Armond Armstead could very well be a starter next season.

However, it’s important to remember that the draft is coming up. Part of the Patriots cap space must be set aside for the incoming rookies. The Patriots had around $11 million before signing Sebastian Vollmer. Depending on how much his cap hit is, the Patriots could be looking at significantly less money left to spend than they’d like. Approximately $5-6 million ought to be set aside for rookies. Many rabid fans want the Patriots to go out and spend big bucks to bring in a big name free agent, but there’s no need for that right now. This team has a strong core, and were AFC runners up. I’d love Brent Grimes, but that would mean cutting players like Stephen Gostkowski or Rob Ninkovich to make space (I personally think Ninkovich will be a cap casualty that allows the Patriots to sign John Abraham). In fact, cuts may come soon to get under the cap. Michael Hoomanawanui is another one to watch. Unless the Jonathan Fanene case goes in New England’s favor, the team will have to be very cautious with who they sign and, more importantly, how much they spend.

You can follow Christopher Field on Twitter @ChrisDField.

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  • Sean Payne

    they had 15 before signing vollmer

  • Tyler Strickland

    Devin McCourty plays free safety

  • KingSupaTroll

    Lol McCourty was a total bust, Dennard will spend next season trading his stinkhole for cigarettes, and Talib will probably leave the team for Al-queda mid-season. The secondary is still the weakest in the league. Have fun in the Dolphin’s rear view this season

  • KingSupaTroll

    The Patriot Way?? LMFAO That won’t work anymore since Goodell took away the spy cameras and the TUCK RULE. However, Gronk said he wouldn’t mind dancing shirtless with a gay teammate in the locker room (Brady). Maybe it’s time to usher in a new LGBT friendly Patriot Way. LMFAO

  • BigTicket5

    This organization is proving to us fans why they have gone the longest of our 4 teams without winning a championship. They get close but cant win the big games anymore because they are a play and/or a player or two short. The problem is they are so far below the cap every year because they try flea market shopping and have become the cheapskates of the league. If they did all they can and spend as much on good players as possible (celtics, bruins, even the red sox) and came up short, then we would at least know they put everything they could into it. Dont let Robert “PennyPincher” Kraft rob you anymore by charging OUTRAGEOUS prices from everything from parking to beer. Dont help him stuff his pockets if he wont go the extra mile like our other owners (or like he said he would when he signed the new brady deal…… Which became a giant two-faced lie). The feeling we have every year now losing the big games could be prevented by doing what the great organizations do…. Actually spend as much as you can, on the best players available. Asante samuel, richard seymour, wes welker, etc. not to mention free agents we should have had like julius peppers a few years ago, and now this year like gholdson, ed reed, osi, dumerville. You think those players might have been the difference over bums like arrington, reche caldwell, tully banta cain, donald jones, etc. Celtics, bruins, red sox all have flaws but at least they dont cheat us by stealing our money. You should be ashamed of yourself Robert. On behalf of all us Boston/NE fans, you my friend have become an absolute buffoon.

  • BigTicket5

    Either this is Robert Kraft who really wrote this article or you are actually a complete moron – opening up your article with “So far Im loving this free agent period”… Where any non patriots-ballwasher would laugh at you and then you talk about being AFC runner-ups like its a good thing. News flash bub, no1 here is interested in being runner-ups…… again. Lets get some real insight here instead of getting excited about yet another season of being “runner-ups”. What a fool you are.