Bad news: The negative narrative hits just keep coming for the New England Patriots this offseason.
Good news: Bill Belichick has plenty of options when it comes to bulletin-board motivation.
In the same woeful week in which a website predicts the Pats will have their worst season in 21 years and when Hall of Famer Willie McGinest forecasts New England finishing 2022 with fewer wins than the Las Vegas Raiders, a prominent sports analytics company says they have had the worst offseason of any NFL team.
Evidenced by a former Pro Bowl cornerback switching teams within the same division Wednesday, free agency isn't officially over. But after the NFL Draft dust has settled and most of the big chips have fallen, Pro Football Focus this week released its grades for all 32 teams.
At the very bottom: New England.
PFF slapped the Pats' draft with a D (worst of any team) and gave their overall offseason a C- (tied only by the Washington Commanders, who settled on signing quarterback Carson Wentz, and the Seattle Seahawks, who traded away star quarterback Russell Wilson).
"While the rest of the AFC was in the midst of an arms race this offseason, the Patriots were sitting largely on the sidelines. Free agency saw some minor moves such as acquiring linebacker Mack Wilson in a trade with Cleveland or signing cornerback Terrance Mitchell, but it was more about re-signing their own players. However, trading away guard Shaq Mason to the Bucs for just a fifth-round draft pick raised some eyebrows and certainly didn’t make them better in the short term.
When the draft rolled around, the Patriots made the one massive shock move of the first round, drafting Chattanooga's Cole Strange to fill that guard spot on the offensive line. They continued to make surprising picks throughout the draft and were widely considered to have had the ‘worst’ draft in the league."
In the AFC East, PFF gave the New York Jets A-, the Buffalo Bills B+ and Miami Dolphins B.