Patriots Make Moves as Free Agency Opens | NECN

Patriots Make Moves as Free Agency Opens

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    NEWSLETTERS

    With the start of the NFL's free agent signing period, the Patriots were active Thursday.

    (Published Thursday, March 9, 2017)

    The New England Patriots have already made some moves after the free agency period began Thursday.

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    The Patriots traded a fourth round draft choice to the Indianapolis Colts on Wednesday for tight end Dwayne Allen and the Colts' sixth round pick.

    Allen acknowledged the trade on Twitter, where he thanked Colts fans for their support and wrote he was "humbled and eager to earn the right to be called a New England Patriot" on Twitter. 

    The Patriots have since confirmed the signing. Allen will replace free agent tight end Martellus Bennett, who is not expected to resign and said goodbye to Pats fans on Twitter on Wednesday.

    "I'm going to miss you," he said. "T'was Fun. Thank you for the good times. To infinity and beyond..."

    The Patriots agreed to sign former Buffalo Bills cornerback Stephon Gilmore to a five-year deal worth $65 million with $40 million guaranteed, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

    NFL.com's Mike Garafolo reports that safety Duron Harmon is returning on a four-year, $20 million deal.

    The Patriots are also putting the finishing touches on a 2-year deal to bring back defensive lineman Alan Branch, according to Mike Giardi of CSNNE.com.

    In addition, ESPN's Dianna Russini is reporting that the Patriots are considering trading Super Bowl XLIX hero Malcolm Butler to the New Orleans Saints for wide receiver Brandin Cooks. The Patriots extended a one-year, $3.91 million tender to Butler earlier this week and have been linked to Cooks in previous trade rumors.

    ESPN also reported that Patriots free agent cornerback Logan Ryan is expected to ink a 3-year deal with the Tennessee Titans.