Quick Slants

Curran: Pats need players who are ‘magnets' to attract more talent

The post-Bill Belichick Patriots aren't an attractive destination for free agents.

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Outside of retaining their key free agents, the New England Patriots' offseason has been a dud. They haven't made major moves to address positions of need such as wide receiver, offensive tackle, and cornerback.

While they're certainly deserving of some blame, their lack of offseason activity isn't due to a lack of effort. For instance, they made a competitive offer to star wide receiver Calvin Ridley before he chose to sign with the Tennessee Titans. That's just one example of a big-name free agent saying "thanks, but no thanks" to being a Patriot in the post-Bill Belichick era.

So, how does New England go about becoming an attractive destination for talented players again? Our Tom E. Curran shared his take on the situation during Tuesday's episode of Quick Slants.

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"The Patriots are trying to attract people, but I think that they got a hard dose of reality during free agency," Curran said. "(Head coach Jerod) Mayo talked jokingly about burning some cash but promised that the team would bring in talent 100 percent. And then (de facto general manager) Eliot Wolf said they would weaponize the offense. Well, you need to underpromise and over-deliver. And this week we've seen the Patriots try to extract themselves from the statements made about bringing players in because, well, in large part, it wasn't a great, great free-agent class and players were not really inclined to come here.

"So, I think light has dawned on Marblehead a little bit that, 'Wow, we are not a destination.' In order to get those magnets, they have to figure that out. But again, this Patriots team I think is casting about for what its identity is going to be. And until they can articulate that themselves, it's gonna be hard to articulate it to outside people. They don't know who they are yet."

You can hear Curran's full take, plus fellow Patriots insider Phil Perry's response, in the video below:

On the latest Quick Slants, Tom E. Curran and Phil Perry break down what the Patriots need to do to attract big-name free agents

With the top free-agent options already off the board, the best way for the Patriots to find "magnets" is via next month's NFL Draft. New England could find its next franchise quarterback with its No. 3 overall pick, or it could trade down for a bevy of assets to expedite their rebuild.

Either way, there is no quick fix for a Pats team that has failed to clinch a playoff berth in three of the last four years. It'll likely be a long road back to contention for New England, and Mayo knows it.

Watch the full "Quick Slants" episode below, or on YouTube:

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