Without a doubt, the cap casualty market could be extremely fruitful for the New England Patriots.
Just look at the availability of Kyle Rudolph. That feels like the perfect fit.
But not every veteran who’s cut loose is worth a look and it’s important that Bill Belichick doesn’t get enamored with guys who would’ve previously had a shot at carving out an integral role for themselves in New England.
We’ve already seen a number of guys get the ax with free agency around the corner as teams are looking to get their financials in order, and just because the Pats have a ton of money to spend doesn’t mean they should jump on every opportunity that feels like it has potential.
Fans are hardly worried about that, though, with how meticulous Belichick and Co. are just about every offseason.
That said, it’s still important to know who they shouldn’t be chasing among this group of players.
Here are three cap casualties the Patriots need to avoid.
3. Tyler Eifert
When Tyler Eifert hit free agency after the 2019 season, he felt like a great fit for the Patriots, especially since they were searching for a capable tight end following Rob Gronkowski’s departure.
But the former Cincinnati Bengal ended up signing with the Jacksonville Jaguars, who ended up giving him a two-year, $15.5 million contract, which, one could argue, was a bit of an overpay for a guy who has been limited to just 71 games across eight NFL seasons.
Now, even at a discount, going after Eifert isn’t worth it for the Pats, especially with all of the other attractive options out there — Jared Cook, Jonnu Smith, Kyle Rudolph, Dan Arnold, Gerald Everett, and more.
There’s no reason for the Patriots to bring Tyler Eifert to New England now.
While Eifert appeared in 15 games last year, he hauled in just 36 catches for 349 yards and two touchdowns. Yes, it was on an awful Jags team, but the tight end is usually a bailout option for inexperienced quarterbacks who are constantly under pressure.
As we’ve said, the Patriots cannot be bargain hunting when it comes to their biggest voids. They need to spend big or make notable splashes on the trade market.
Don’t even think about Eifert, even if he’ll come super cheap.