Towards the end of Super Bowl XLVI, Eli Manning stood inside the pocket largely unpressured and nearly untouched by the Patriots’ pass rush.
That is certainly a void New England is looking to fill this offseason, and Belichick is reportedly looking outside the Foxboro fort for some fresh blood along the defensive line.
According to a report from the Boston Herald’s Ian Rappaport, the Patriots are interested in Seattle defensive end Red Bryant and may be looking to work out a deal with the four-year NFL veteran.
Bryant is a big body, at 6-foot-4 and 330 pounds, and is a versatile commodity that can play both inside and outside on the defensive line. He hasn’t been the most consistent contributor in his four seasons, though, playing his first full 16-game season in 2011.
Bryant has only 66 career tackles, but the Texas A&M product had his most productive season in 2011 with 32 tackles and a sack for the Seahawks.
Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston reports that Bryant would likely command around $6 million per season and could cost even more depending on the interest of the market.
The pursuit of Bryant could be an indication that the Pats are in fact not in on the race for Houston Texans’ defensive end Mario Williams, or maybe Belichick is just preparing for a back-up plan in case Williams isn’t intrigued by New England’s offer.