They will also need to allocate a lot of resources towards keeping their own free agents, including center David Andrews.
One of an increasingly smaller number of holdovers from the Tom Brady era, Andrews gave the Patriots’ offense a reliable force in the middle that could be counted upon to keep his QB upright without drawing penalties.
Andrews is a free agent this offseason, meaning that he could potentially star somewhere that likes to spend money more than notoriously frugal Patriots.
However, if Andrews could have his pick of teams to play for, it sounds like he’s eyeing up a return to coach Bill Belichick and New England.
On an Instagram Q&A session, Andrews claims that he considers New England “home,” but he is keeping his options open in free agency. Still, if Andrews had his druthers, it sounds like he wants to be a Patriot.
David Andrews has been a quality center for the Patriots.
Andrews slipped into the ranks of the undrafted after a productive college career at Georgia, but it didn’t take long for him to become one of the key cogs in Dante Scarnecchia’s offensive line. While he did miss the entire 2019 season due to a pulmonary embolism, Andrews has still started 69 games over the last five seasons.
With Joe Thuney potentially leaving New England in free agency, the Patriots need to keep their solid offensive line together in some capacity. Andrews might not be the biggest center, but he’s proven to be equally adept in run and pass blocking, and he should be on track to sustain that production in 2021 and beyond.
Andrews does carry a health risk along with him, but it’s hard to find centers with his skill level on the free-agent market. With a questionable draft class in regards to the interior offensive line, Andrews looks like the most natural candidate to start at center for the Pats in 2021.
If the Patriots hope to use the draft to stock up on positional talent, they will need to hit free agency hard if they want to once again have an above-average offensive line. With Andrews wanting to play in New England, not possessing an exorbitant price tag, and already being familiar with the offense, the fit is practically seamless.