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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Patriots Take a Trip to Revis Island

What a difference 24 hours can make after NFL free agency begins. Last night, Patriots fans were all understandably pissed as Aqib Talib bolted for big money in Denver. The Broncos didn't stop there as they also added defensive end DeMarcus Ware this afternoon and let's not forget young safety T.J. Ward too. Was New England going to respond at all to the best team in the AFC?

As always, the lesson with this is we need to have a little patience. Last time I checked, the Super Bowl isn't won in March. So yes, we all want the Pats to be more aggressive and spend additional money while Tom Brady is still playing and Bill Belichick remains the head coach. Tampa Bay released franchise cornerback Darrelle Revis this afternoon and immediately the Revis to the Patriots rumors gained some traction. Fast forward to tonight: he signed a one-year deal with New England worth $12 million.

Even if you're not a Patriots honk, you have to appreciate the value (yes, that overused word in Foxborough) that they got on Revis. By waiting for the smoke to clear and not freaking out, the Pats were rewarded with the best cornerback in the NFL who turns 29 in July. It's not hyperbole to say that he can completely change their defense since he'll shut down one side of the field from day one.

The Broncos are New England's biggest rival in the JV conference but let's not forget how much this has to kill the Jets-their main rival in the sorry AFC (L)East. Revis made his money with the Jets: in four of his five seasons in NY, he played 16 games and he was an All-Pro three times.

All recovered from a torn ACL, he played in all 16 games for the Buccaneers last season after being traded there. For his career, he's amassed 21 interceptions, five forced fumbles, six fumble recoveries, three touchdowns, 109 passes defended, 284 solo tackles and 60 assists. Revis is an old school cornerback in that he can actually tackle and he's not just a track star or guy afraid to tackle and help out in the run game. Plus he's got legit size (5-11, 198 pounds).

Let's be clear: the Patriots need a bunch more talented players (DE, TE, WR and S to name a few positions) but this is a perfect start. He'll be motivated to get a long-term deal and his name value should help attract other quality free agents to join him in a run at the Super Bowl. I don't want to get ahead of myself but this could have been the night that the Patriots finally got their mojo back thanks to Revis.

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