New England Patriots Rumors: Sign or pass on 3 free agent targets

Leonard Fournette #7 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Leonard Fournette #7 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
4 of 4
New England Patriots
Leonard Fournette #7 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots free agent target No. 1: Leonard Fournette

Somehow Butler wasn’t the most interesting name coming into town for a visit today. No, that would be Leonard Fournette, who has managed to salvage his career over the past two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Fournette’s market hasn’t developed the way he expected it to, and it appears he may have to lower his expectations a bit as we enter week two of free agency.

Fournette turned himself into a safety valve of sorts for another old friend, Tom Brady, with the Bucs. Fournette is a dynamic dual threat running back who can burn you on the ground (180 CAR, 812 YDS, 8 TD) and through the air (69 REC, 454 YDS, 2 TD). After struggling at times with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Fournette turned a running back by committee approach with the Bucs in 2020 into a starting job last season.

Fournette is a very talented player clearly. The question is, where does he fit in with this team? The New England Patriots are seemingly set at running back, with Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson becoming a powerful duo last season. They also re-signed James White earlier in free agency to return to his role of pass-catching running back.

There just doesn’t appear to be a pressing need for Fournette right now, which makes this visit the most confusing. Unless Belichick intends on trading away one of Harris or Stevenson now (which would be idiotic to say the least), there’s really no need to bring Fournette on board. Not to mention, he’s already scared away most of his market with the amount of money he is looking for.

Next. 5 defensive prospects the Patriots should draft. dark


The front office has been very calculated with how they have spent their money so far in free agency, and signing Fournette would go against everything they have done so far. He’s a player looking for money he’s probably not going to get, and plays a position New England needs no help at right now. Cap space is limited right now, and the front office should use it wisely rather than throw it at a player who don’t fill an immediate hole on this roster.