4 Patriots on Thin Ice Heading Into Free Agency

These four New England Patriots players find themselves on thin ice as the NFL free agency period is set to open on March 13.

Patriots WR JuJu Smith-Schuster is one of four players on thin ice in New England ahead of free agency.
Patriots WR JuJu Smith-Schuster is one of four players on thin ice in New England ahead of free agency. / Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
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3. WR DeVante Parker

Imagine that. Another member of the Patriots' passing game is also on thin ice.

Like Smith-Schuster, DeVante Parker is another wideout who barely generated any results. The oft-injured receiver started in all 13 of his 2023 appearances, hauling in 33 balls for 394 yards without a touchdown for the first time in his nine-year career. The 30.3 receiving yards he averaged per game were the second-worst rate of his career while his 66.8 passer rating when targeted further highlighted his lack of reliability.

Parker is signed through the 2025 campaign, carrying a cap hit of $6.4 million in 2024. While it's clear that the ex-Louisville Cardinal's production doesn't match his price tag, the Patriots can save the following amount of money if they move on from him this offseason, per Spotrac.

Pre-June 1 Cut Savings

Pre-June 1 Trade Savings

Post-June 1 Cut Savings

Post-June 1 Trade Savings

$133,332

$3,333,332

$1,700,000

$4,900,000

This year's free-agent WR class is deep, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Patriots opt to replace Parker with someone as good (if not better) at a fraction of the cost. He just isn't worth the money for the on-field results he brings (or lack thereof).