8. Josh Uche
Another Michigan man, Josh Uche's name was swirling ahead of the trade deadline.
There was reportedly a deal from the Jacksonville Jaguars on the table, but the Patriots and Jaguars couldn't agree on whether Uche was worth a fourth rounder or fifth rounder. Some NFC teams were interested in his services, too.
Regardless, Uche ultimately remained in New England, which for most franchises would probably indicate that they see him as part of the future, but in this case it was likely another example of Bill Belichick trying to get too cute in negotiations.
Pro Football Focus has Uche ranked as the 48th-best free agent available and 10th-best edge rusher. His market value should sit around $8.3 million average annual value.
Uche had a breakout 2022 campaign, when he finished second on the team with 11.5 sacks, but he regressed this season and only recorded three. His 11.5 total in 2022 was good for 13th in the NFL. Whichever team he ends up representing next season will undoubtedly be looking for him to return to his 2022 form.
Uche is still young (he doesn't turn 26 until September) and has shown an ability to push the passer at an elite level in the NFL. Plenty of teams will be calling in free agency, and the fact that the Patriots were fielding trade offers and haven't locked him up yet isn't promising.