The New England Patriots’ 2020 season will come to an end on Sunday, and the organization will head into an offseason filled with questions at that point. While the future of the quarterback position is sure to dominate headlines over the weeks and months to follow, one storyline that should get no less attention is the team’s free agency class beyond Cam Newton.
Numerous cornerstone players are headed for the open market, with the Patriots’ most dependable defensive tackle among them: Lawrence Guy’s deal is set to expire in March, making him one of 23 unrestricted free agents on the organization’s current payroll.
Guy is one of the most prominent names on that list and therefore a theoretical candidate to leave New England in a few weeks. As he pointed out during a media conference call earlier this week, however, the preferred outcome of his journey to free agency would be a return to the team with which he spent the last four seasons.
“I’d love to return to New England,” Guy said on Friday. “I laid the roots already here, so if I’m able to do that that would be amazing. New England has been very blessing to me. They’re very special to me, the community has helped me out a lot and I’ve helped out the community. It’s a good group of people here overall with the players, coaches and the staff, and it’s something you get to cherish.”
A former seventh-round draft pick in 2011, Guy first arrived in New England in 2017. Ever since signing a four-year, $20 million free agency deal, he has been a core member of the Patriots’ defense and has appeared in 61 regular season games as well as seven playoff contests fo the club. Along the way, he helped bring a Super Bowl to Foxborough and was also named to the Patriots’ Team of the 2010s.
“Four years being in any place is a blessing,” said Guy when talking about his upcoming free agency this week. “You get to build these relationships with everyone in the building, and I was able to do that. I’ve seen rookies come and go, I’ve seen veterans come and go, but the experiences, the roots that are laid in this organization and in a community, are special to me.
“Every year I do the same thing, I reflect on my years and cherish every moment, because not a lot of people get to do this professionally. Not a lot of people can say, ‘Hey this is the type of year, I was doing this or doing that.’ I’m truly blessed to be around the teammates that I have and the coaches I have.”
After four of those with the Patriots, Guy is now heading into the unknown — part of a prominent free agency class that also includes four other Patriots team captains: the aforementioned Cam Newton as well as running back James White, center David Andrews and cornerback Jason McCourty are also in need of new contracts (if the team wants to have them back in the first place).
While every situation is different, Guy pointed out that he would not be a in a position to comment on what would be ahead for him.
“The future, I can’t really speak on that, that’s between agents and coaches and contracts,” he said. “The only thing I can speak on is what I’m planning on doing on Sunday and the memories I’m going to lay on this last game with my teammates.”
The Patriots will host the New York Jets on Sunday, and Guy is expected to again play a major role for the team’s defense — just like he has ever since his arrival in New England.