With the start of free agency nine days away, the New England Patriots have made their first move. According to multiple reports, the team has decided to release veteran linebacker Kyle Van Noy.
While Van Noy carries a dead salary cap charge of $2.45 million, the move will still create $4.23 million in net cap savings for the Patriots. They will now be roughly $9.5 million under the league’s projected salary cap of $208.2 million.
Van Noy, 30, re-joined the Patriots last offseason on a two-year contract with a total value of $12 million. He was a productive player for one of the best defenses in the league. Appearing in 17 of 18 games and playing 864 of 1,135 defensive snaps (76.1%), Van Noy notched five sacks as well as two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, and an interception that was returned for a touchdown.
A second-round draft pick by the Detroit Lions in 2014, Van Noy found little success with his first team — prompting an in-season trade to the Patriots in 2016. He developed into a highly valuable member of the team over the next few years, winning two Super Bowls along the way.
Van Noy joined the Miami Dolphins in 2020 but was released the following offseason, paving the way for a return to New England. One year later, he is on the open market again.
With Van Noy released, the Patriots’ outside linebacker group loses its most experienced member. The other edge defenders currently under contract are Pro Bowler Matthew Judon as well as youngsters Josh Uche, Ronnie Perkins and Chase Winovich.