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Patriots Daily: Unsigned New England Free Agents

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New England Patriots defensive end Lawrence Guy Sr. (93) reacts following an NFL pre-season football game against the Houston Texans, Thursday, Aug. 10, 2023, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Greg M. Cooper)

The New England Patriots lost several veterans from the 2023 roster. Mack Wilson Sr., Myles Bryant, Jalen Mills, Mike Gesicki, and Pharoah Brown were among those who signed elsewhere in free agency. Matthew Slater, James Fernetz, and Cody Davis were all announced their NFL retirements, as did DeVante Parker following a trade to Philadelphia. But several former Patriots became NFL free agents and have yet to sign. A look at former New England players who remain on the open market.

2023 New England Patriots Players Unsigned

Six players ended last season on the Patriots roster (active or otherwise) and are still unsigned. This list consists of Lawrence Guy, Adrian Phillips, J.C. Jackson, Conor McDermott, Riley Reiff, and Tre Nixon.

Lawrence Guy Sr. was an excellent and productive defensive lineman for the Patriots. He played the last seven of his 13 NFL seasons in New England. Now age 34, Guy is closing in on the end of his NFL career, but showed in 2023 that he still has some solid football left. He played every game last season and finished with 38 tackles. He’s also an excellent player in both the locker room and the community. The Super Bowl 53 champion could try to add another ring to his collection before hanging them up for good. Landing with a team that missed out on Calais Campbell is a distinct possibility.

Also Read – Sixteen NFL Free Agents Who Should Interest the Patriots

Adrian Phillips was a depth safety and core special teams player the past two years in New England. He was a very effective tackling safety before Jabrill Peppers supplanted him in the starting lineup. Like Guy, he is a reliable veteran who should find a new home before the 2024 season begins.

J.C. Jackson struggled both on and off the field in 2023. A return to New England could still be in the cards for Jackson. He will likely need to sign a team-friendly deal to show that he can still play effectively and is in a good head space regardless of where he ends up.

Conor McDermott finding a new home as a swing tackle is likely. Even if he doesn’t make a 53-man roster, he’d be a valuable veteran to have on a team’s practice squad for a potential elevation. His fellow offensive lineman Riley Reiff might have a more difficult time finding a new home. He struggled with health and performance in 2023, though he appeared more comfortable when moved inside to guard. Reiff likely wants to end his career on a more positive note than how his time in New England went. Tre Nixon was a seventh-round pick in 2021. He spent his rookie year on the practice squad and 2023 on IR.

2023 Practice Squad Players Unsigned

In addition to the six players noted above, six Patriots who ended 2023 on the practice squad are still without a team. This group is made up of Breon Borders, William Hooper, T.J. Luther, Kody Russey, Matt Sokol, and Ke’Shawn Vaughn. This group will look to latch onto tryouts and practice squad spots in 2024. Unfortunately for this group, being let go by a team near the bottom of the standings can make it difficult to catch another team’s attention. But Andrew Stueber was claimed by the Atlanta Falcons soon after being waived by the Patriots. For all of these players, it just takes one team, perhaps just one person, to believe in them to have another shot at playing in the National Football League.

Also in today’s Patriots Daily:

Patriots Fact of the Day

Six defensive linemen played in over 100 games for Bill Belichick with the New England Patriots:

179 Vince Wilfork
136 Jarvis Green
126 Richard Seymour
120 Ty Warren
118 Lawrence Guy Sr.
117 Deatrich Wise Jr.

Note: Rob Ninkovich played defensive end and outside linebacker during his time with New England. He didn’t qualify for the list, despite playing in 140 games under Belichick with the Patriots. Only 74 of those 140 games were credited as him playing as a defensive lineman.

Post of the Day

The Boston Red Sox beat the New York Yankees 3-0 on Sunday Night Baseball yesterday, thanks to two home runs by All Star third baseman Rafael Devers. But the home run alone is not what earned this the post of the day. It was the person who retweeted it: New England Patriots rookie QB Drake Maye. He figured out quickly how to win over Boston sports fans:

Patriots Football Now Coverage

PFN – Eliot Wolf declared he would follow “The Packer Way” when he became the New England Patriots final decision-maker. This stresses drafting, developing, and extending core players. A look at the progress of “The Packer Way” in New England.

PFN – Part of “The Packer Way” is extending core players. However, as training camp approaches, the Patriots’ lone Pro Bowl selection over the past two seasons is set to hit free agency in 2025. Are Matthew Judon and the Patriots headed for a breakup?

PFN – Patriots Football Now continues to focus on every player on the New England Patriots roster. The inside linebackers feature starters Ja’Whaun Bentley and Jahlani Tavai, followed by a group of players hoping to stick as reserve linebackers and core special teams players. Among this group is a player who has missed two of his three seasons in New England. Patriots 90-man roster spotlight: Raekwon McMillan.

More New England Patriots Coverage

Pats Pulpit – Bernd Buchmesser gives an outstanding history lesson on professional football in New England. Long before Robert Kraft or even Billy Sullivan, there were several other teams representing the region, with varying degrees of success. Remembering the founding fathers of professional football in New England.

The Boston Globe – Chad Finn saw that the Patriots are projected to finish with the worst record in the NFL this season. ESPN’s model projected them to “earn” the No. 1 overall pick in the 2025 NFL Draft. But Finn doesn’t agree. The Patriots the worst team in the NFL? Not buying it.

Musket Fire – Sara Marshall asks about some alternative happenings during the Patriots dynasty. What if Drew Bledsoe never got injured? How about if Tom Brady finished his career in New England? Marshall recounts 5 of the biggest what-ifs for the Patriots during the Bill Belichick era.

NFL Coverage

Steelers Now – The Pittsburgh Steelers began the offseason with most expecting Kenny Pickett to return as the team’s starting quarterback in 2024. Pickett is now a member of the Philadelphia Eagles. Pittsburgh signed Russell Wilson, then traded for Justin Fields. Alan Saunders reports on how Steelers QB Justin Fields turns heads with offseason workout regimen.

NFL.com – In addition to the New England Patriots players listed above, there are a lot of quality football players remaining unsigned on the free agent maket. Among those looking for a home are cornerbacks Stephon Gilmore, Adoree Jackson, Xavien Howard, and safeties Justin Simmons and Micah Hyde. Looking to sign himself, former Pro Bowl cornerback Patrick Peterson questions the state of the defensive back market.

Yahoo! Sports – Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill has been one of the NFL’s most productive wide receivers since leaving Kansas City for Miami after the 2021 season. The one thing he has not replicated in Miami is championship success. With no guaranteed money left after 2024, Tyreek Hill says “real goal” is not a contract extension but another Super Bowl.

Boston Bruins

Boston Hockey Now – Mick Colageo reports on the Boston Bruins downplaying big changes (literally) to their roster. Andrew Fantucchio updates people on the Bruins finding new homes in free agency. And the 2024-2025 Boston Bruins schedule is released, with key dates and opponents.

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