The Patriots are sitting pretty with the No. 3 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, marking the first time in three decades they’ve held such a prominent role in the league’s draft proceedings.

That’s probably why everyone is so quick to forget about free agency, and how New England has money to burn.

Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo, on the other hand, is well-aware he’ll be adding some proven talent this offseason. New England’s leaders have mentioned on multiple occasions the organization is looking to add game-changers on the offensive side. Eliot Wolf, for instance, said he wanted to “weaponize” the unit.

It was Mayo’s turn to speak Wednesday, and the 38-year-old helped explain what that means for the Patriots.

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“It just looks like putting people on the offensive side of the ball that the defensive side has to prepare for,” Mayo said, per MassLive’s Mark Daniels. “Whether that’s double teaming or anything like that. That’s what he means by that.”

New England won’t be able to complete a rebuild by spending money, even though they have a ton of it. It’s a strategy that has crashed and burned before (*cough* 2011 Philadelphia Eagles *cough*), so the Patriots know it’ll take more. Mayo and company are looking for a few traits that ensure they’ll get some value no matter what.

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“It’s hard to build a sustainable team through free agency,” Mayo said. “But do you want those pieces that you can kind of plug in. One thing I would say about free agents, you’ve got to make sure they’re a good culture fit or culture add as well. That’s definitely important for us.”

The Patriots’ success in finding culture fits in recent seasons has been a mixed bag, but there have also been a number of players who needed to find homes elsewhere. Hunter Henry was a free-agency addition who eventually became a captain, while the stories of Jack Jones and J.C. Jackson have been well told.

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Mayo’s adamant New England is entering a new era, and is looking to build the foundation with players that fit the culture he’s looking to implement.

Featured image via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images