How Patriots Nation is trending towards positivity
Call it convenience, familiarity or just the best opportunity available. But there’s something to the idea of former Patriots offensive tackles sticking around the AFC East of late. It’s happened twice in the past two weeks, no less! First, 2018 first-round pick Isaiah Wynn signed a one-year deal with the Miami Dolphins. Wynn played the full five years of his rookie deal and was not offered an extension by the Pats. Best for all parties.
Then news hits Tuesday that, according to the New York Post’s Brian Costello, the New York Jets are signing former Pats right tackle Yodny Cajuste. A third-round pick from 2019 and the last pick from that less than stellar draft (aka “The N’Keal Harry Class”), Cajuste was released on May 18 by the Pats, ending his four-year stint that saw only 17 games played and five starts for New England the past two seasons. Cajuste never found a spot, nor was he able to take advantage of opportunities to shore up a position that had issues the past two seasons.
Cajuste, who signed a restricted free agent tender of $2.73 million for the Pats earlier in the offseason, faced long odds with the additions of Riley Reiff and Calvin Anderson for the right tackle job, not to mention veteran swing tackle Conor McDermott sticking around on a two-year deal. Now he gets a chance to be a depth piece where McDermott used to play, and maybe show the Pats they made the wrong decision in letting him go.
A lot of “revenge tours” this season for tackles that didn’t pan out recently in New England. It’s one thing when a draft pick doesn’t work out for you. It’s another when that draft pick does not pan out then signs with a division rival. There’s a chance it works out against you with payback on the mind, and then again it could also play out in your favor since the team let them go in the first place. Yet another small storyline of intrigue in one of the most competitive and fascinating divisions in the NFL this season.