Advertisement

Do Bills' surprising roster cuts present an opportunity for Patriots?

Do Bills' surprising roster cuts present an opportunity for Patriots? originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The Buffalo Bills' bills are coming due.

General manager Brandon Beane has built a deep, talented squad in Buffalo that has won at least 10 games in five consecutive seasons. The Bills entered this week more than $40 million over the salary cap, however, forcing Beane to release several core free agents ahead of 2024 free agency.

Among Buffalo's cap casualties were three locker room leaders in safety Jordan Poyer, cornerback Tre'Davious White and center Mitch Morse, in addition to wide receiver Deonte Harty, running back Nyheim Hines and special teamer Siran Neal.

The Bills still should be a playoff team in 2024 with quarterback Josh Allen leading the offense. But their roster trimming may interest one of their AFC East competitors.

The New England Patriots could be in the market for an outside cornerback who could play opposite Christian Gonzalez and allow Jonathan Jones to move to his natural slot corner position. And while ex-Patriot Stephon Gilmore has been floated as one potential free-agent option, our Patriots Insider Phil Perry is bullish on White.

"I think when healthy, this guy is one of the better corners, or has been at least, in the AFC," Perry said of White on NBC Sports Boston's Arbella Early Edition, as seen in the video player above. "I don't know why you turn that down. And in New England, if we all think Christian Gonzalez is going to be the centerpiece of your defense in some ways for the foreseeable future as a true No. 1 corner, (White) is like the ideal No. 2 corner.

"He could play (against) a variety of different types of receivers. He's tough. He's given the Patriots all kinds of problems over the course of the last few years. He's been banged up himself, so he's not what he was probably two or three years ago, but I wouldn't mind bringing him in at all."

White made two Pro Bowls during his first four seasons in Buffalo, earning First-Team All-Pro honors in 2019 while leading the NFL with six interceptions. The 29-year-old has played just 10 total games over the past two seasons due to a torn ACL and a torn Achilles tendon, so the injury concerns are real. But if the price is right and White is able to stay healthy, he'd give New England two Pro Bowl-level cornerbacks on the boundaries.

The Patriots also could benefit from adding a pass-catching running back, and Hines fits that skill set: He averaged 52.4 receptions and 384.3 receiving yards per season with the Indianapolis Colts before coming to Buffalo in 2022.

New England is set to enter next week's free agency with the second-most cap space in the NFL ($88 million), so it has the resources to address its multiple roster needs entering the 2024 season.