New England Patriots

Gibson explains what made Patriots a good fit for him in NFL free agency

Gibson was impressed with new head coach Jerod Mayo.

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The New England Patriots didn't make a huge splash during the first few days of NFL free agency, but one signing that could pay plenty of dividends next season is the addition of Antonio Gibson.

The 25-year-old running back signed a three-year contract with the Patriots last week that is reportedly worth $11.25 million. Gibson was a third-round draft pick of the Washington Commanders in 2020 and played four seasons for the NFC East franchise.

What drew Gibson to the Patriots during the free agent process? He explained Monday in a video conference call with reporters.

“A bunch of young guys, a new coaching staff, I got a chance to talk to a lot of the coaches and I’m super excited for what they’ve got planned and how they plan on moving things forward,” Gibson said.

“Me and my agent talked it over. We had a lot of good talks, and we felt like this was the best place for me. They showed love, they reciprocated it, and I’m just ready to get things going.”

Gibson also liked what he heard and saw from new Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo.

“I sat down with him, had good conversation. Definitely a different vibe from a head coach just from the one day I met him," Gibson explained. "Nothing against (former Commanders head coach Ron) Rivera. (Mayo) didn’t sound like a coach. It sounded like he was talking to one of the guys.

"I feel like that’s something that might be a positive thing in the locker room. For him to be able to relate and communicate like that and kinda understanding both sides of it."

Gibson ran for 265 yards (4.1 per carry) and one touchdown, while also catching a career-high 48 passes for 389 yards and two touchdowns in 16 games for the Commanders last season. He has the fourth-most receiving yards by a running back since the start of the 2020 season.

But he's not just a pass-catching running back or a third-down option. Gibson should be able to bolster the Patriots rushing attack, too. He averaged 4.1 yards per carry with 22 rushing touchdowns across four seasons in Washington.

Phil Perry, Albert Breer and Tom Curran react to the Patriots signing running back Antonio Gibson and whether it means the team will move on from Ezekiel Elliott after one season.
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