STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL REPORT
-- PK Adam Vinatieri (signed tender of $2.51M).
TRANSITION PLAYER: None.
UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS
-- RB Rabih Abdullah is a special teamer and reserve running back with the size and physical stature the Patriots like. He could get a training camp invite because New England doesn't have much depth at the position. Cedric Cobbs' potential and Kory Chapman's play in Europe could impact Abdullah's status especially with young players like safety Guss Scott and Benjamin Watson returning from injury and expected to play on special teams. Signing him is not an immediate priority.
-- WR Troy Brown carried a cap number of $5.7 million into 2005 with $5 million in new money so after trying to negotiate those numbers down, the Patriots declined to pick up a team option that would have required a $2.5 million March 2 bonus payment. Brown was looking for No. 2 receiver money for three years and the Pats were apparently offering No. 3 receiver type dollars. The two sides are likely to continue negotiations, and Brown could be back in the mix.
-- S Je'Rod Cherry is a special teamer who won't likely be re-signed. With Scott returning from a knee injury, Cherry, who once again performed well in the kicking game, is expendable and is the type of player New England would look to sign during the season as an injury replacement if he were available.
-- WR Kevin Kasper won't likely be re-signed unless the Patriots become thin at wide receiver over the next two months. Then, if Kasper is still available, he could be signed in May or June to compete for a job in camp.
RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: None.
EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS
-- OL Gene Mruczkowski (tendered at $305,000) has been with the team in some capacity - either the practice squad or the active roster -- for a couple of seasons and seems to be progressing. He will be tendered and brought to camp to battle for a job. His ability to play guard and center helps his chances since the Patriots have no true backup center on the roster.
--OT Tom Ashworth: RFA; $1.43M/1 yr.
--LB Don Davis: UFA; terms unknown.
--WR David Givens: RFA; $1.43M/1 yr.
--OT Brandon Gorin: Potential RFA; $2.3M/3 yrs, $400,000 SB.
--DL Jarvis Green: RFA; $1.43M/1 yr.
--DT Ethan Kelley: ERFA; $305,000/1 yr.
--OG Stephen Neal: RFA; $1.43M/1 yr.
--FB Patrick Pass: UFA; $1.36M/2 yrs, $150,000 SB; 2005 cap: $615,000.
--CB Hank Poteat: FA, had been released by Patriots; terms unknown.
--S Guss Scott: ERFA; $305,000/1 yr.
--PK Adam Vinatieri: Franchise FA: $2.51M/1 yr.
--TE Jed Weaver: FA, had been released by Patriots; terms unknown.
--LB Monty Beisel: UFA Chiefs; $1.65M/2 yrs, $400,000 SB; 2005
--WR/KR Tim Dwight: FA Chargers; 1 yr, terms unknown.
--WLB/SS Wes Mallard: Not tendered as RFA by Giants; terms unknown.
--CB Duane Starks (trade Cardinals).
--WR David Terrell: FA Bears; $900,000/1 yr, $200,000 SB.
--OG Joe Andruzzi: UFA Browns; $9M/4 yrs, SB unknown.
--TE Zeron Flemister (released).
--OT Adrian Klemm: UFA Packers; $2.6M/2 yrs, $800,000 SB/$200,000 RB '06.
--CB Ty Law (released).
--QB Jim Miller: UFA Giants; $790,000/1 yr, $25,000 SB.
--CB Earthwind Moreland (released).
--WR David Patten: UFA Redskins; $13M/5 yrs, $3.5M SB.
--LB Roman Phifer (released/failed physical).
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