Patriots Rumors: At least three teams in on Dion Lewis
Recent New England Patriots rumors involving Dion Lewis provide us with some teams that are in on the free agent running back.
This offseason there have been plenty of New England Patriots rumors revolving around running back Dion Lewis. Lewis is entering free agency as one of the best running backs available. Since Le’Veon Bell received the franchise tag from the Pittsburgh Steelers, Lewis is arguably the best running back available.
Since the Super Bowl concluded five weeks ago, there has been a lot of discussion about where Lewis could end up next season. The Patriots would love to keep him after a career season, but it will not be easy.
New England has some cap restrictions, as they are near the bottom of the NFL in available money. They have also been notoriously frugal with running back spending. That could be a recipe for disaster in regards to retaining Lewis.
Early indications were that Lewis would be leaving this offseason. Lewis is looking for $10 million guaranteed on a three-year deal worth about $15-18 million. That is out of the $3 million price range New England usually operates in with running backs.
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Lewis himself was unsure about his future in New England. Most recently, it was believed to be a long shot that he would return. Part of that thinking was that Lewis would have a robust free agent market, as he was drawing a lot of interest. Now, we know some of those teams that are interested in acquiring Lewis.
According to Jason La Connfora of CBS Sports, at least three teams have already shown interest in Lewis. The New York Jets, Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Colts were the teams he named. He also believes the San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns and Oakland Raiders could get involved once the market opens.
Michael Giardi of NBC Sports Boston also confirmed that the Colts are in on Lewis on his Twitter page.
It should be no surprise that these many teams are in on Lewis. As arguably the best running back available, he will have no shortage of suitors as everyone could use a running back of his caliber.
Lewis set a career-high with 896 rushing yards last season despite receiving fewer than 10 carries in six games. It also took at least six weeks into the season for him to take over the early-down role.
In addition to the work Lewis did on the ground, he is also a solid receiver out of the backfield. He caught 32 passes for 214 yards and three touchdowns last season. In 14 games the previous two seasons, Lewis caught 53 passes for 482 yards and two touchdowns.
Lewis has shown that he can be a versatile back, as he gets the job done on the ground and on passing downs.
Next: 3 Reasons The Patriots Should Re-Sign Dion Lewis
Keeping him in New England will be a challenge, but they will fight to keep him according to La Canfora. It may just not be a winning battle with all of these teams jumping into the fray.