New England Patriots Depth Chart
- AFC East
- Gillette Stadium
- Head Coach
- Bill Belichick
- Offensive Coordinator
- Josh McDaniels
- Defensive Coordinator
- Steve Belichick & Jerod Mayo
- Special Teams Coach
- Cameron Achord
- Defensive Scheme
New England Patriots restricted free-agent cornerback J.C. Jackson signed his second-round tender offer on Friday. However, interested teams could still offer lower draft picks and create a trade, similar to the Malcolm Butler situation a few years back. Jackson will make $3.38 million now that he's back with the Patriots. The 25-year-old became a star for New England's secondary in 2020 with nine interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Jackson entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent out of Maryland in 2018 and quickly became one of the team's top defensive players, as he has 17 career interceptions in just three seasons. He also had 14 passes defensed last year and hasn't missed a game since his rookie season.
New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore, the 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, is entering the final year of his five-year deal. He may not be elite like he was two years ago, but Gilmore is still a very good cornerback as he approaches his 31st birthday this September. As such, Gilmore isn't guaranteed to receive a lucrative offer from the Patriots when he reaches free agency next offseason. "It's out of my control," he said. "I'm just happy to be a Patriot right now, and see how it goes." Gilmore will account for $16.265 million in salary cap space in 2021, which is over $7 million less than he accounted for in 2020. He's expected to remain the team's top corner opposite J.C. Jackson, but there's no guarantee he'll be back in 2022.
After being released by the New England Patriots on Monday with a failed-physical designation, wide receiver Julian Edelman officially announced his retirement from football. Edelman tried to play through a pretty serious knee injury last year that eventually required surgery, and he was not going to be able to make it back in 2021 for a full season. The veteran pass-catcher missed 10 games because of the injury last year. "By any measure of what constitutes an elite NFL career -- wins, championships, production -- Julian has it all," Patriots head coach Bill Belichick said. Edelman was as clutch as they come and converted to wideout after playing quarterback in college. The seventh-round pick in 2009 blossomed into a slot receiver in New England, where he spent his entire career. He had his first 1,000-yard season in 2013, catching 105 passes for 1,056 yards and six touchdowns. From 2009-2019, he caught 599 passes for 6,507 yards and 36 touchdowns as quarterback Tom Brady's most trusted target while helping the team win three Super Bowls. Edelman is second all time to only Jerry Rice in playoff catches (118) and yards (1,442). His 620 career catches rank second in team history behind Wes Welker (672).
The New England Patriots released veteran wide receiver Julian Edelman (knee) on Monday, following 11 seasons and three Super Bowl victories with the team. Edelman was listed as a failed physical after he'd been working to return from an injured knee last season. He'll now be facing a decision on his future in the league and could decide to hang up his cleats. Although it's not official just yet, don't be surprised to hear soon that Edelman has decided to retire. Because of the knee injury he suffered last year, it's unlikely that the 34-year-old will be able to play the entirety of the 2021 season. One of the most trustworthy PPR players in fantasy in his time with the Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady, Edelman was sorely missed in New England after he was injured in 2020. He played in just six games last year and had 21 catches for 315 yards and no touchdowns. If this is the end of the road, Edelman will finish his NFL career with 620 regular season receptions, 6,822 yards and 36 touchdowns in 137 games (85 starts), all with the Pats.
The New England Patriots are signing exclusive-rights free-agent fullback Jakob Johnson to an undisclosed one-year deal on Thursday, according to his agent, Drew Rosenhaus. Johnson's return was all but certain after the club tendered him a contract, which meant that he couldn't negotiate with other teams. He played in every game last year and started 11 times. Johnson caught eight passes for 35 yards and a touchdown while also playing on 170 special teams snaps. The Patriots also re-signed running back James White on Wednesday. Johnson will continue to block for White, Sony Michel, Damien Harris and J.J. Taylor in 2021. Rex Burkhead remains a free agent.