The New England Patriots visited with former Oakland Raiders, Arizona Cardinals, and Denver Broncos offensive tackle Jared Veldheer, per ESPN’s Field Yates, and I think he would be the perfect signing.
The 6’8, 320-pound Veldheer was a third round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft by the Raiders and quickly became the team’s starting left tackle. He held that job for all four years, including a 2013 season where he was limited with a triceps injury.
He signed a 5-year deal with the Cardinals in free agency and started for four years, suffering a season-ending triceps injury in 2016 and an ankle injury in 2017. The Cardinals moved Veldheer to right tackle for the 2017 season, where he struggled greatly. Arizona traded Veldheer to the Broncos for the 2018 season, where he continued to play right tackle and struggled; in his defense, he suffered a knee injury early in the year that he played through.
When healthy and at left tackle, Veldheer is a solid, if not pretty good, offensive tackle. He has the prototypical size that the Patriots’ like at left tackle- similar length to Nate Solder and Trent Brown- and he’ll be affordable. By waiting to sign Veldheer until the second Tuesday after the draft, he won’t count against the Patriots’ compensatory draft pick calculus, either!
Veldheer would be the perfect veteran that could slot into the starting lineup until either 2018 first round OT Isaiah Wynn (Achilles) or 2019 third round OT Yodny Cajuste (quad) recover and return from their respective injuries.
And if Veldheer wins the job outright, well, no one should complain about signing a starter as a free agent in May.