The Patriots are looking towards free agency and every good team makes sure they take care of their own players that they've brought up through the system that they want to retain. This is why safety Devin McCourty is considered a top priority to retain for the long term.
New England's whole free agency period hinges on at least five major contract changes:
1) Darrelle Revis needs to be extended as his current 2015 cap hit is $25 million. This is the highest cap hit for a cornerback in the league by over $10 million.
2) Jerod Mayo needs to be restructured as his current 2015 cap hit is $10.3 million. This is currently the 2nd highest cap hit for an inside linebacker.
3) Vince Wilfork needs to be restructured as his current 2015 cap hit is $8.3 million. This is currently the 5th highest cap hit for a defensive tackle.
4) Nate Solder needs to be extended as his current 2015 cap hit is $7.4 million. This is reasonable for a starting left tackle (14th highest cap for a tackle in the league), but could stand to be reduced over time with an extension.
5) Danny Amendola needs to be restructured as his current 2015 cap hit is $5.7 million. This is reasonable for a starting #1 receiver, but for a depth slot receiver this needs to be reduced.
Our friend Miguel breaks down all the possible Patriots cap moves better than anyone else, so you should just go read it here.
But for our exercise here, let's say that the Patriots retain and extend the above five players for cost effective amounts.
If you were the general manager, what position would be the most important to address in free agency? Does your view of the draft impact your decision?
Here's a list of the Patriots free agents:
LS Danny Aiken
ED Akeem Ayers
DT Alan Branch
LB Jonathan Casillas
IL Dan Connolly
K Stephen Gostkowski
FS Devin McCourty
RB Stevan Ridley
RB Shane Vereen
LB Chris White
FB James Develin
LB James Morris
WR Greg Orton
DT Sealver Siliga
WR Brian Tyms
Who are your priorities? If you had to choose just a couple of the above players, who would you prioritize and why?
Here's a list of free agents this off-season. Try and reload the Patriots for another Super Bowl season!