Four Biggest Signings of the Patriots Offseason



Tight end Hunter Henry will be a key piece in the Patriots offense. Photo courtesy of the Associated Press.

The 2020-2021 New England Patriots were the worst football team this city has seen in nearly two decades. Despite a brutal 7-9 record, it would not have been surprising if the team had performed even worse considering the talent, or lack thereof, present in New England. To make a bad situation worse for the Patriots, Tom Brady and the Buccaneers won the Super Bowl. While many Pats fans were rooting for Brady, and rightfully so, him winning the Super Bowl is a horrible look for Bill Belichick and the Patriots. So how did Belichick respond to the situation? Entering the offseason, the Patriots had the second most cap space in the NFL and Belichick is using it all. In just about three days, the Patriots spent over $250 million in free agency. For reference, New England spent less than $25 million in the previous 2020 offseason. Let’s see the four biggest names the Patriots have added and how they will impact the team.

TE Jonnu Smith 4yr/$50m: The Patriots were last in the league in nearly all tight end stats in 2020. Signing Jonnu Smith will completely change this. Smith is only 25 years old and already doing damage. He caught eight touchdown passes last season and is surprisingly quick for his size. Previously, Belichick has referred to Smith as the “best in the league after the catch.” Ultimately, Jonnu Smith gives the Patriots a legitimate tight end option for the first time since Rob Gronkowski left the team.

LB Matthew Judon 4yr/$56m: With Lawrence Guy, Adam Butler, Deatrich Wise and John Simon all potentially becoming free agents and signing with other teams, defensive depth was a priority for New England this offseason. Judon is a stud and a two-time Pro Bowler at age 28. He is, simply put, one of the best pass rushers in the game and will be a staple in the Patriots defense for the next four years.

TE Hunter Henry 3yr/$37.5m: Somehow the Patriots managed to sign the two best tight ends in free agency and the importance cannot be overstated. Everything true about the Jonnu Smith signing goes for this signing as well, except now the Patriots will have not one, but two elite tight ends. It is hard to not imagine a new version of the two tight end offense that New England had with Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski. Like Smith, Henry is also young at just 26 years old. Expect this pair of tight ends to dominate together in New England.

WR Nelson Agholor 2yr/$26m: Agholor spent most of his career with the Eagles before playing the 2020 season with Oakland. In that year, he posted his best numbers with 48 catches and eight touchdowns. Now he will be going into his age-27 season with New England looking to continue the upwards trend. Even if his numbers dip slightly, he will still be a WR1 for the Patriots who have needed receiver depth for years. He should be a big part of the new Patriots offense.