One of the multiple areas the New England Patriots need to address over the course of the offseason is their defensive line. The team started over the course of the weekend by trading for former Cleveland Browns first round draft pick Danny Shelton and apparently has now turned its focused to the edge. According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, free agent pass rusher Adrian Clayborn will visit the team:
I’m told free agent DL Adrian Clayborn “is flying to Boston tonight” for a scheduled visit with the #Patriots, per source.
The 29-year old, who started his career as a first round draft pick with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, is coming off the most productive season of his career. He appeared in all 18 of the Atlanta Falcons' games in 2017 and registered 9.5 sacks (although six of those came in one game) as well as a total of 54 pressures – numbers that would rank him first and second, respectively, on the 2017 Patriots.
While he would likely not serve as an every down defender in New England, Clayborn would be a nice veteran addition to the defensive edge rotation. The team currently has Trey Flowers and Deatrich Wise Jr. as the top options, with Derek Rivers – coming off injured reserve after an ACL tear – the projected third member of the top tier. Eric Lee, Geneo Grissom and Keionta Davis are the next men down the depth chart.