The New England Patriots continue to make moves as the offseason rolls on, as they reached terms with former Panthers receiver Brandon LaFell earlier today. LaFell, 27, is now one of the bigger receivers on the team at 6'2" and 210 pounds. He was a 3rd round pick in 2010, and spent his entire career in Carolina, where he totaled 167 catches for 2,385 yards and 13 TDs. Last year, LaFell had 49 receptions for 627 yards and 5 TDs.
This is a classic Bill Belichick signing in that it adds some veteran depth to a relatively thin position. And while I wouldn't call LaFell a lock to make the roster, despite the length of his contract, he does give Tommy B another big target and potential Red Zone threat. LaFell was a borderline WR2/solid WR3 for Carolina during his tenure there, and with Julian Edelman returning earlier this afternoon, LaFell is likely to remain somewhere in the vicinity of that third option, depending on the development of youngsters Aaron Dobson, Kenbrell Thompkins, and Josh Boyce. The receiving corps is starting to take shape.
And speaking of taking shape, former Titan Kenny Britt is scheduled to meet with the team tomorrow. There has been talk of bringing Britt in for some time now, and there's a chance it finally happens with this impending visit. I imagine that there is going to be a lot of controversy surrounding Britt, as he has gotten himself the well-deserved reputation of being a highly talented malcontent who never quite lived up to his potential. He is also coming off an injury and a 2013 season that saw him catch less balls all season than Julian Edelman catches in a single game (11 for 96 yards). His off-field issues are well-documented, both by the league and various police logs, and he has been known to turn on a team at the drop of a hat. I'm sure there are more than a few fans out there that want no part of Kenny Britt, and that's understandable.
That said, he's 6'3", 225 pounds, and has the talent and ability to be a #1 receiver should he keep his nose clean and his head down. Furthermore, he was a member of the New England Patriots Farm Team - Rutgers University - and has close ties with Greg Schiano, who is more than likely to be working with the Patriots in some capacity this year. He cleary wasn't happy in Tennessee, and a change of scenery and a stint at the Robert Kraft Rehabilitation and Wellness Center might be just what he needs. If Britt is willing to come in on a short-term, incentive-laden "prove it" deal in which the Patriots owe him nothing if he gets in trouble again, he could end up being one of the biggest steals of the offseason.
The dust hasn't quite settle yet on Free Agent Frenzy; we'll just have to wait and see what tomorrow brings.