Where there is talent, there is also the wish for representative financial compensation – a topic every NFL franchise is confronted with throughout the year. The New England Patriots are no different as the team has a lot of young talent on its roster, especially on the defensive side of the ball.
Talent, that is slowly but steadily approaching the end of its respective contracts: defenders Dont'a Hightower, Jamie Collins and Malcolm Butler are just three members of New England's defensive core looking to get paid soon. Naturally, this means that team and player representatives will start negotiations at one point prior to the end of a contract.
In the case of the Patriots, however, those talks will likely not begin until late July – at least according to New England Patriots Draft's Mike Loyko:
Told talks on new contracts likely won't start until around training camp. #patriots
With the key members of their defense under contract until after the 2016 season, the Patriots have no need to rush anything, especially after the team has traded Pro Bowl defensive end Chandler Jones to the Arizona Cardinals, thus having one looming extension less to worry about.
The contracts the team does need to worry about are those of Hightower, Collins and Butler, as well as Jabaal Sheard's and Logan Ryan's. All five are projected to play a significant number of snaps next season and will be eager to prove that they are worthy of a big-time contract either in Foxboro or someplace else.
The foundation for those contracts has already been laid – the next step will apparently be taken over the course of the summer.