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It's week 11. How are those free agent pickups doing?


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17 hours ago, Apparition said:

OLB Matthew Judon (4 years/$56m/$32m gtd)
B E A S T. When this signing was made, I tried to not get too hyped up on it because I remembered when the Pats signed Adalius Thomas, who had a very similar athletic profile to Judon and played a similar role in the Ravens defense, and he turned out to be a major disappointment. But Judon has been everything he was advertised to be and more. Through 10 games, he's 4th in the league with 9.5 sacks, which puts him on pace to challenge the Patriots team record, set by Andre Tippett in 1984. He also ranks 6th with 19 QB hits and 7th with 10 TFL. But more important than what the stat sheet says, he's substantially transformed the character of the defense from a relatively passive one that would often get manhandled on outside runs last year into a downhill attacking style that can also get home while rushing 4. And on top of everything, he's been a strong locker room presence, which was a big issue with Adalius Thomas.

TE Jonnu Smith (4 years/$50m/$31.25 gtd)
On the flip side, Jonnu has been a major disappointment. He was better in recent weeks, before hurting his shoulder (no word yet on if he'll be available in week 11) but early on he was a disaster with his catching and ball security, and just didn't seem to have his head in the game. Week 3 against the Saints was one of the worst performances I can recall seeing from any player in a Pats uniform. So far he's got 21 catches for 193 yards and 1 TD and hasn't really earned Mac Jones' trust.

TE Hunter Henry (3 years/$37.4m/$24m gtd)
Henry's performance softens the blow of the Jonnu Smith disappointment. He hasn't been a Gronk-esque gamebreaker, but he's been a productive and reliable target who currently leads all TEs with 7 touchdowns. His yardage numbers aren't eye-popping but he's been very effective in the red zone, giving the offense a dimension it was sorely lacking last year. He's also been a very good blocker.

DB Jalen Mills (4 years/$24m/$9m gtd)
Mills didn't play corner all of 2020. In 2021 he's been thrust into a starting CB role and the results have been pretty predictable. He's been the weak link in the secondary all season, and we don't anticipate that changing any time soon. The impending free agency of both Devin McCourty and Adrian Phillips mean Mills will likely be moved to safety in 2022. But it's tough to watch him struggle on the outside, knowing that it could've been Stephon Gilmore locking down that side of the field instead. 

WR Nelson Agholor (2 years/$24m/$16m gtd)
Agholor was brought in to be a stretch-the-field guy who opened up space underneath for the tight ends and Jakobi Meyers, and caught the occasional long ball. So far he's done a decent job with the former, but with the exception of one 44-yard strike against the Chargers, the latter hasn't really materialized yet. He's contributed a decent amount in the short and intermediate games, and we hold out hope that he'll find the deep ball chemistry with McCorkle that Bourne has developed, but for the time being this signing is a bit of a flop.

DT Davon Godchaux (2 years/$16m/$9m gtd)
He's come on in recent weeks, along with the entire run defense. Early in the year he looked like a bit of a bust because the line hadn't rounded into shape yet. But the emergence of Christian Barmore as a dominant interior disruptor has been a catalyst for the whole front-seven to be more effective in their respective roles. Godchaux's is that of a space eater in the middle who comes off the field on passing downs, and in that regard there's been little to complain about in recent weeks.

WR Kendrick Bourne (3 years/$15m/$5.25m gtd)
Maybe one of the top steals in all of free agency. Bourne had a breakout game in week 3 against the Saints, when he made an impressive TD catch along the sideline to put the Pats within striking distance in what was otherwise their worst game of the year. Since then he's emerged as McCorkle's favorite downfield target, averaging 15.8 yards per catch, including a handful of eye-popping plays. He's got an outside shot at reaching the 1000-yard mark this season, and is reminding me of David Givens - one of the more underrated receivers from the Brady era.

DL Henry Anderson (2 years/$7m/$3m gtd)
Brought in to be a rotational 3/5-tech and placeholder for Barmore. He suffered a torn pectoral in week 4 and was done for the season. Prior to that he was barely playing anyway. Barely worth mentioning. 

Not going to bother listing Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins, Ted Karras or Trent Brown because they've all been here before.

Raekwon McMillan tore his ACL in camp and has missed the entire season.


Hunter Henry……😢

Edited by Xenos
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14 hours ago, HerbertGOAT said:


Corey Linsley - Been as advertised. Brings a high level of leadership and cohesion to what was the weakest part of our team for years. Absolute stud.

Matt Feiler - Been one of the best run blockers in the league, but is a little lackluster in pass protection. Still, he brings some nastiness and tenacity to the line.

Oday Aboushi - Much, MUCH better than expected. I thought he was gonna be very mediocre, considering the Lions let him walk at 2 million. That was completely wrong. He played very well prior to his ACL Tear.

Ryan Smith - Solid special teamer. Not much else to say. He did what he did in Tampa.

Jared Cook - He has been a very serviceable replacement for Hunter Henry, and has looked better than him at times. I'm satisfied with Cook's production, especially at a discount (Also, on the subject of Henry, he's playing better than I ever saw him play in his 5 years as a Charger. Good for you, Pats.)

Kyler Fackrell - Bust. Hasn't shown up very often at all, and he's one of the reasons why teams can double Bosa all game. He provides no real threat from the other Edge.

Christian Covington - He made some plays, but overall just kinda meh. He's a rotational player on the D-Line for one of the worst run defenses in the league, so yeah.

Fackrell was supposed to be a ST guy and depth at edge behind Nwosu. I don’t know if he qualifies as a bust. Maybe slight disappointment 🤷‍♂️

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13 hours ago, Xenos said:

Fackrell was supposed to be a ST guy and depth at edge behind Nwosu. I don’t know if he qualifies as a bust. Maybe slight disappointment 🤷‍♂️

I expected him to make plays fairly often, given his good 2018 season and the fact he was gonna be on the other side of Bosa usually.

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