Dwight Freeney garnered "last minute interest" from the New England Patriots, but it was all for naught, as he is reportedly set to sign a two-year deal with the San Diego Chargers. Ian Rapoport reported the agreement while the USA Today's Jarrett Bell reported the Patriots' late interest.
The seven-time pro bowler Freeney had been in San Diego for the past few days talking with the Chargers. With pass rusher Melvin Ingram tearing his ACL, the Bolts acted quickly, and wanted to bring in Freeney for a visit and ultimately sign him to fill in for Ingram. He can make up to $13.5 million over his two-year deal with San Diego.
Even though I think Freeney fits the Patriots' 4-3 scheme better than he will the 3-4 defense of the Chargers, he ultimately did what we all expected him to do, and that's chase the money. There's no way that the Patriots would have offered that kind of money (Freeney is reportedly guaranteed around $8 million). Plus, it seems that they would have used him as a part-time player, and maybe as a third-down pass rusher.
I can't fault him for taking the money, but he likely won't win a ring out in San Diego.
With Freeney now off the market, the only big-name pass rusher that the Patriots have been connected with is John Abraham, who could make his decision in the coming days. But for the Patriots to land him, he'll have to take less money and probably less playing time.