New England Patriots: Nate Solder named as top offensive free agent


Pro Football Focus recently named the Top 10 offensive free agents this offseason. Who made the list for the New England Patriots?

After losing to the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl 52, the New England Patriots will be attempting to have a strong offseason in order to get back and win the big game next season.

As always, the Patriots have a few key free agents this offseason. On the defensive side of the ball, replacing Malcolm Butler will certainly be one of their priorities. Due to the relationship falling apart between the two sides, it’s almost impossible to believe that he will be back next season.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Patriots have key players like Dion Lewis, Rex Burkhead, and Nate Solder all as free agents. All three played well for the Patriots last season, but it could be Solder that is the most important of the three.

Pro Football Focus recently named Solder as one of the Top 10 offensive free agents this offseason. Here’s what they had to say about the left tackle on the Patriots.

"Long the blindside protector for Tom Brady, Solder struggled in pass protection this past season but was excellent blocking for the run. His 83.2 run-blocking grade was the 12th-highest among the league’s tackles, as he was once again a dependable force on the Patriots offensive line."

As the starting left tackle for the Patriots, replacing Solder would certainly be a challenging task for New England. Even though Solder had a slow start to the season due to some injuries, he ended up having a  good season overall.

According to Pro Football Focus, Solder was graded as the 32nd best tackle in the NFL last season. While that was a drop from 2016, injuries did play a factor in him having some bad games early on in the season.

However, Solder’s ability as a run blocker was still at an elite level last season, as he did an excellent job in that department in 2017. Considering his position, it isn’t shocking to see him listed as one of the top offensive free agents.

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Since protecting Tom Brady is crucial for the Patriots, seeing them trying re-signing Solder shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Solder showed last season that he still can be an effective left tackle in the NFL, and the Patriots will likely be trying to bring him back.