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New England Patriots links 2/22/18 - Branch worth cutting for cap space?

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Daily news and links for Thursday

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

TEAM TALK

  • Erik Scalavino examines the free agency landscape from a Patriots perspective, beginning with perhaps the most important position groups for New England: Defensive back.
  • Don Banks and Nick Stevens - Cover 2 Podcast: Player movement in the NFL, college QB landing spots in the draft, NFL Combine, more. (48.11 min.)

LOCAL LINKS

  • Kevin Duffy considers eight players the Patriots can cut to create more salary cap room for free agency.
  • Stephen Hewitt ranks the Patriots 2018 schedule to see which game is best.
  • Sam Puran (FullPressCoverage) Patriots year in review: Week 1-4 breakdown.
  • Mike Dussault (PatsPropaganda) Patriots over-investment in secondary didn’t pay off.
  • Matt Monitto (PatsFootballFans) Potential practice squad breakouts.
  • Mike Reiss notes Julian Edelman shared an Instagram snapshot of his rehab progress this week, captioned with one word: “determined”.
  • Zack Cox makes the case that the Patriots’ most important impending free agent is Nate Solder, for whom the team does not have a viable replacement plan.
  • Kevin Duffy comes up with a list of buy-low free agent candidates on the offensive side of the ball for the Patriots, including RB Jeremy Hill and WR John Brown.
  • Tom E. Curran continues his offseason position breakdown: Tight end suddenly a tenuous spot for New England.
  • Zack Cox finishes up his position-by-position look at the roster with the safety position.
  • Tyler Sullivan (247 Sports) Patriots free agent profiles: Matthew Slater and Johnson Bademosi.
  • Ian Glendon (FullPressCoverage) Potential free agent fits for the Patriots.
  • Henry McKenna (PatriotsWire) 5 cornerbacks Patriots could target in free agency.
  • Tyler Sullivan (247Sports) The Patriots should make another run at Richard Sherman. /Did they ever make a first run?
  • Danny Picard predicts which numbers the Red Sox, Bruins, Patriots and Celtics will retire next.
  • Ryan Hannable recaps how two-time Super Bowl champion and former NFL DE Dexter Manley went off on Tom Brady.
  • Henry McKenna (PatriotsWire) ESPN mock draft: Patriots pick LSU CB Donte Jackson in 1st round.

NATIONAL NEWS

  • Robert Klemko (SI) How are players selected for the NFL Scouting Combine? Jeff Foster takes us inside the process.
  • Albert Breer (SI) Game Plan: The farce of free agency’s tampering period.
  • Marc Sessler (NFL.com) Free-agency fun, AFC: Kirk Cousins to Jets? Dion Lewis to Fins?
  • Frank Schwab (Yahoo! Sports) With Jarvis Landry getting franchise tag, crop of free-agent WRs looking thin again.
  • Danny Kelly (The Ringer) The 2014 NFL draft class is ready for its second act.
  • Gregg Rosenthal (NFL.com) NFL trade tsunami? This offseason could be defined by deals.
  • Gil Brandt (NFL.com) Top 10 defensive backs to pursue in free agency, 2018 NFL Draft.
  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) NFLPA president hopes for “longer runway” before Thursday night games.

EXTRACURRICULAR

  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) NBA fines Mark Cuban $600,000 for tanking remarks. /Good read.
  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Mavericks’ situation raises obvious question: Which other teams have issues like this?
  • Sheilla Dingus (AdvocacyForFairnessInSports) Predators lurk at every turn as neurologically impaired ex-NFL players seek concussion settlement relief.
  • Sam Cooper (Yahoo! Sports) Longtime NFL linebacker estimates he sustained 2,500 concussions in his career.
  • Lindsay H. Jones (USA Today) NFL contingent to participate in inaugural Advocacy in Sports workshop.