"Superteams" are often a luxury afforded to the hardwood of the NBA, with New England used to the idea thanks to the Boston Celtics' union of Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce in 2008. New England Patriots star Matthew Judon appears to be trying to bring the concept to the gridiron.
The Patriots' season has been over for just over a week, but Judon is already back on the recruiting trail, apparently setting his sights on Los Angeles Rams superstar Aaron Donald. Southern California's defensive legend missed the final month of the season with an injury but remained active in NFL headlines thanks to a cryptic change in his Twitter bio that labeled him a "former NFL D Linemen." Donald has since this week assuring followers of his return, one that would be a $26 million cap hit for the Rams.
That seemingly secure financial situation didn't stop Judon from making a brief, number-centered pitch, letting Donald (replying to analysis from fellow Rams alum Chris Long) know that it wouldn't be hard for the equipment managers in New England to stitch up a jersey for him.
"Aye ain’t nobody wearing 99 in New England. Just saying," Judon said, closing his tweet with a shrug emoji.
In New England lore, the No. 99 is perhaps best represented by former defensive lineman Mike Wright, who spent seven seasons with the team after joining as an undrafted free agent in 2005. While Judon is correct that no beater of 99 currently resides on New England's active roster, it does stand as the current digits of linebacker Jamie Collins, who lingers on the Patriots' practice squad.
Fresh off arguably the best season of his career, Judon has gained a bit of a reputation as a New England recruiter, notably reaching out to several high-profile free agents last offseason to gauge their interest in Foxboro. Those skills could loom larger than ever as the Patriots approach a fateful offseason: at just under $33 million, New England is currently blessed with the seventh-highest cap space in football.
While certainly not called upon for his recruiting skills, Judon is set to make his fourth consecutive Pro Bowl appearance when the event moves to a skills competition format on Feb. 5 (3 p.m. ET, ESPN/ABC).
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags
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