Patriots Reportedly Hosting Leonard Fournette For Free Agent Visit

The Patriots have long been linked to Fournette

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After spending the last two seasons with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay, running back Leonard Fournette reportedly is visiting Brady’s former club.

The New England Patriots are hosting Fournette for a free agent visit Monday, according to multiple reports.

This isn’t the first time the Patriots have shown interest in the veteran ball-carrier. They also were linked to Fournette in each of the last two offseasons.

Fournette seemingly would be a luxury addition to this current Patriots roster, which already features a rock-solid early-down duo in Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson. But the 27-year-old also is a proven pass-catcher — averaging nearly five receptions per game for the Buccaneers in 2021 — and recently re-signed third-down back James White might not be ready for a full-time workload as returns from season-ending hip surgery.

In 14 games for the Bucs this past season, Fournette rushed for 812 yards (4.5 per carry) and eight touchdowns and caught 69 passes for 454 yards and two scores. He ranked third among full-time running backs in both catches and receiving yards despite missing three games.

There’s a chance the Patriots could look to trade Harris as he enters the final year of his rookie contract, but Fournette is unlikely to sign for less than the $1.2 million salary cap hit Harris set to carry in 2022. Harris also is coming off a career year, rushing for 929 yards and 15 touchdowns despite missing two games.

J.J. Taylor, newly signed hybrid back Ty Montgomery and 2021 practice squadder Devine Ozigbo round out New England’s current running back depth chart.

Cornerback Malcolm Butler and offensive lineman Ryan Bates also are visiting the Patriots on Monday, per multiple reports.

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