The general consensus around both Patriots Nation and the NFL was that New England was pretty well set at the tight end position. So it falls perfectly in line with a Bill Belichick kind of move that the Patriots signed TE Clay Harbor this afternoon, according to multiple sources.
Harbor, 28, was a fourth round selection in 2010 by the Philadelphia Eagles, where he played for three years before signing with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He tallied 14 receptions for 149 yards and a touchdown in 2015 - numbers that Gronk tends to put up in a single game - and spent most of the year as the third string tight end behind Julius Thomas and Marcedes Lewis. His best season came in 2013, where he finished the year with 292 yards on 24 receptions with two touchdowns.
At this point, Harbor is a camp body, a depth signing, and little else; he isn't big enough to be a purely blocking tight end (6'3", 250 lbs) and doesn't have the athleticism that pass catching TEs have. Both Michael Williams and A.J. Derby offer higher upside than Harbor, but given the tendency for injury at the position, having guys who know the playbook and can step in if needed is important. Harbor is far from a roster lock, but at this point in the offseason, there is zero downside to a low-money contract that gives him a chance to compete.