Left tackle Nate Solder was lost for the season in the 4th game with torn biceps, and his replacement Marcus Cannon suffered from turf toe in the 5th game that limited his ability for the entire season. Right tackle Sebastian Vollmer had to play on the left side and was lost with a concussion in week 9- and didn't look the same for the rest of the year.
The Patriots promoted Cameron Fleming from the practice squad- and he was on the practice squad for a reason-and added LaAdrian Waddle from the Lions through waivers. These were two players that the rest of the league didn't consider good enough to be on their active roster. The Patriots also signed Keavon Milton to a futures contract.
New England didn't add talent to the tackle position this offseason (assuming 3rd round pick Joe Thuney plays guard), although it seems like the team is hoping that the return of Solder, along with the improved health of Vollmer and Cannon, should fix the unit's problem.
Solder is a lock to the make the team, while Waddle received $250,000 signing bonus and $25,000 workout bonus, and should be considered close to a lock for 2016. Vollmer was the team's best tackle in 2015 and it would be a major shock if he didn't make the roster.
Cannon comes with a monster price tag that doesn't align with his performance on the field, but the Patriots don't really have any other viable options as Fleming and Milton leave a lot to be desired.
Assuming Solder, Vollmer, and Waddle are locks, who is the fourth tackle on the roster?
Check out our Running Back poll here. (James White: 26%, D.J. Foster: 25%, Donald Brown: 24%)
Check out our Wide Receiver poll here. (Devin Lucien: 40%, Nate Washington: 34%)
Check out our Tight End poll here. (Clay Harbor: 63%)
Check out our Interior Offensive Line poll here. (David Andrews: 46%, Tre Jackson: 36%)