Intrigue of Patriots’ 90-man roster
The span of time from when undrafted free agents are signed to when training camp starts is an intriguing time to be a New England Patriots fan. Save for the occasional roster shuffling (such as the release of Tony Steward to make room for Joey Iosefa), the 90 players currently on the roster will be the same group taking the field when training camp begins in late July. There are a few interesting things about this juncture.
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For one, there has been an injection of youth into this roster. When the NFL expanded offseason roster limits from 80 to 90 players, it meant that roughly 320 additional college kids would be given a chance to realize their pro dreams. In total, the Patriots have 17 rookies chomping at the bit to prove themselves this summer, from initial 2016 draft pick Cyrus Jones to undrafted tight ends Bryce Williams and Steven Scheu, who face long odds to crack the loaded tight end roster.
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Additionally, this roster houses no shortage of veteran offseason additions. There are the notable acquisitions of Martellus Bennett, Chris Hogan, Chris Long, Shea McClellin, and Terrance Knighton. And then there are the more under-the-radar newcomers like Ramon Humber and E.J. Biggers.
Last but certainly not least are the returning Patriots players who will have to compete with this influx of new faces on the roster. Guys like Aaron Dobson, Chris Harper and Keshawn Martin at wide receiver and Justin Coleman and Darryl Roberts at cornerback.
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To illustrate this intrigue another way, think of the Patriots in their current form like an unpainted canvas. There are different colors of paint about to be applied on the canvas. The draft picks are blue, the undrafted rookies are green, the free agent signings are red, the pieces picked up via trade are yellow and the returning Patriots are orange.
Next: AFC Power Rankings: Pats top post-draft edition
Lots of possibilities.