Patriots' top 5 game-changing moves during the 2024 offseason

NFL Offseason Recap: High-Profile Moves and New England Patriots' Strategy Without Belichick
New England Patriots Press Conference
New England Patriots Press Conference / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages
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Ending the Mac Jones saga

I'll come right out and say it: I was never a fan of Mac Jones donning a Patriots uniform. The former Alabama product clearly benefitted from the talent the school inherently attracts. It always felt like his teammates were making him look better rather than the other way around.

For context, Jones was throwing to the likes of DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle, and John Metchie III and had workhorse RB Najee Harris out of the backfield for good measure.

He never looked comfortable playing at NFL speed. His reads were slow. He held the ball too long. He didn't have the leadership qualities necessary to fill the starting quarterback job either. Overall, he just wasn't the guy.

Fortunately, the Patriots figured this out and sent him down to Jacksonville in a trade that netted them a sixth-round pick in the draft. The Mac Jones era is officially over, and that is, in and of itself, a reason to celebrate.

Extending DL Christian Barmore

Since he arrived in New England in 2021, Christian Barmore has been a stabilizing force for the team. The powerful defensive lineman has shown that he has all the tools to be one of the next-best linemen in the NFL.

An injury-plagued second season derailed that notion a bit, meaning his third season in the league would have to be impactful. Suffice it to say, he had one hell of an impactful third season this past year.

Barmore's 8.5 sacks last year were easily a career high. He was consistently disruptive and showed the Patriots they have a new defensive leader on the roster. This resulted in a four-year contract extension that will keep him in navy and red for the foreseeable future, and that is awesome.

The Patriots are counting on young talents to emerge as stars, and Barmore is among the few on this roster poised for such a role.

Timing his contract extension with his rise to prominence guarantees that New England secures a pivotal figure on defense for the foreseeable future. As the cornerstone of the team’s defensive rebuild, Barmore is set to be the foundational piece around which the Patriots will shape their new defensive strategy.