The New England Patriots lost their top cornerback to the Denver Broncos in Day 1 of free agency, and now the perennial AFC contenders have surfaced as a very likely landing spot for Darrelle Revis.
According to multiple reports, the Patriots have contacted the Tampa Bay Buccaneers about trading for Revis. New England is “in a strong position” to nab the Pro Bowler as the team has $14.4 million in cap space, as well as two sixth-round picks.
Patriots in a strong position to land Revis now, especially after Talib’s deal. Revis wants to be there. Will only take a 5th round pick
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 12, 2014
However, NFL.com reported Revis is unwilling to take a pay cut from his $16 million per year salary, which makes it all the more difficult for the Bucs to make a deal. The Oakland Raiders and the Cleveland Browns — whose first-year coach Mike Pettine was Revis’ defensive coordinator with the New York Jets — have also shown interest. The Browns are also in the mix for one of — if not, the — best running back available. According to the Akron-Beacon Journal, the team is hosting former Houston Texans back Ben Tate, who has been linked to the Browns since Mike Lombardi was in the front office.
Cleveland has been in need of an established running back since trading Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts early in the 2013 season. Tate, 25, may be available on a one-year deal.
The wide receiver-needy Jets are hosting the top free agent available at the position Wednesday. According to numerous reports, former Denver Broncos wideout Eric Decker in New Jersey.
Eric Decker visiting Jets today.
— Kimberly Jones (@KimJonesSports) March 12, 2014
The Jets lack a true No. 1 wideout, especially since the Santonio Holmes trade did not work out and Jeremy Kerley is the team’s most reliable pass-catcher. One of the team’s top offseason priorities has been to find adequate weapons for second-year quarterback Geno Smith.
Another wide receiver who just hit free agency may be close to finding a new home, too. According to the Baltimore Sun, longtime Carolina Panthers receiver Steve Smith is a “strong fit” with the Baltimore Ravens.
The team is expected to emerge as a very realistic landing spot for the veteran and would fit in a similar role to that of Anquan Boldin’s opposite of Torrey Smith during the team’s 2012-13 Super Bowl run. Smith, 35, has also been linked to the Bucs.