Sep 29, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; New England Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib (31) celebrates an interception in the second half against the New Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The Patriots won 30-23. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

New England Patriots Free Agent Profile: Aqib Talib

Nov 18, 2013; Charlotte, NC, USA; New England Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib (31) on the field in the first quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

If there is one guy that the New England Patriots must re-sign this offseason, it is cornerback Aqib Talib.

When healthy, Talib is one of the best cover corners in the NFL. The Patriots have a great group of cornerbacks when Talib is on the field, as his ability to take away half of the field allows the rest of the defense to be much more aggressive, where they are at their best.

The biggest issue the Pats face with re-signing Talib, is his durability. He missed a couple of games during the regular season, but more importantly, he has been on the sideline for the majority of the last two AFC Championship games. You could make a serious argument saying that the Pats would have won those two games, if Talib hadn’t gotten hurt. When you dole out long term contracts in this league, you have to make sure the player will be able to stay on the football field. It doesn’t matter how talented Talib is, because if he can’t stay healthy, he is making absolutely no impact for New England.

When it is all said and done, I think Talib will be back in Foxboro for the 2014 season. He is far too important to lose, and if he bolts, the Patriots’ secondary instantly becomes average once again. Bill Belichick and Bob Kraft don’t want to go back down that road, and if it means giving Talib a decent contract, I think it will happen.

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