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Patriots sign nine players to future contracts

Today is just the second day off the offseason but the Patriots are already working on 2017.

Earlier today, the New England Patriots celebrated their fifth Super Bowl title by parading through the streets of Boston. Despite all the partying of the last two days, though, the team’s personell department did not forget its job; one that never sleeps: Building next year’s team.

Today, not even 48 hours removed from the Super Bowl, the first offseason transactions were announced by the Patriots. Per a press release, they have signed the following nine players to future contracts:

OT Chris Barker

LB Trevor Bates

OG Jamil Douglas

OG Chase Farris

RB Tyler Gaffney

DT Woodrow Hamilton

DT Darius Kilgo

WR Devin Lucien

TE Rob Housler

Eight of the nine players above were on the Patriots’ final practice squad and will return next season, at least during the offseason. The other two members of the practice squad, at least from today’s perspective, will not: Fullback Glenn Gronkowski and wide receiver DeAndrew White are on their way to become free agents.

The ninth player is tight end Rob Housler, whose signing was already reported in January, but not made official until today. The 28-year old was a third round draft pick in 2011 and has appeared in 66 NFL games over the course of his career, which began with the Arizona Cardinals and also included stints in Chicago and Cleveland. Housler spent the 2016 season out of football.