Report: Patriots Front-Runners to Acquire Quarterback A.J. Feeley

If the 2008 season taught us anything in New England, it's that backup quarterbacks are more important than we think.

After the Patriots released Kevin O'Connell on Monday, Bill Belichick's quarterback corps was whittled down to Tom Brady and Andrew Walter. With the depleted staff, the Pats have been shopping around the league for another arm. And according to The Philadelphia Inquirer, their sights are set on Eagles quarterback A.J. Feeley, who has taken an even further backseat to starter Donovan McNabb in the City of Brotherly Love since Michael Vick rode into town.

Because of the Pats' abundance of tight ends, New England is a front-runner to nab Feeley.

According to Bob Brookover and Jeff McLane:

"New England continues to be one of the more interesting suitors for Feeley because it may be willing to trade one of its tight ends. The Patriots would definitely be willing to deal Alex Smith, a 2005 third-round pick by Tampa Bay who was traded to the Patriots for a fifth-round pick in the offseason. The other tight ends on the New England roster are Ben Watson, Chris Baker and David Thomas. All three are ahead of Smith on the depth chart posted on New England's Web site.''

Feeley also happens to a tie to Boston. His wife, Heather Mitts, is a defender for the Boston Breakers of the Women's Professional Soccer league.

The 32-year-old Oregon native has started 15 of 23 career games. The eight-year veteran has completed 372 of 665 passes for 4,070 yards and 27 touchdowns in his career with the the Eagles and Dolphins.

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