New England Patriots rumors finally present some good news. Reggie Wayne is with the Patriots to take a physical, giving a strong hint that he could soon sign with the team. A report from NBC Sports confirms that Wayne is in New England, and that he could become a great weapon for quarterback Tom Brady to work with. Prior rumors seemed to indicate that the Carolina Panthers would push hard to sign him after Kelvin Benjamin got hurt, but the Patriots might have stolen him away.
Last season, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick spoke well of Wayne, suggesting that he would certainly welcome the veteran receiver to his team. With a roster that just won the Super Bowl, Belichick would certainly love to overcome the “Deflategate” stories by getting his team right back to the championship. NBC Sports quoted a lot of what Belichick had to say about Wayne.
“Yeah, he’s still really good at everything. [He’s] obviously a real smart and experienced guy; knows how to set up routes, make all of his routes look the same, does a great job of releasing and then at the top of his routes being able to create separation at just the right time when the quarterback is ready to throw. He’s been a key guy for them in critical situations and third down-type situations.”
That’s high praise from a coach that is typically really reserved. These New England Patriots rumors don’t indicate how much the team is offering to pay Wayne, but it can’t be that much. The team has just about $7.5 million left available below the salary cap, so he would have to take a pay cut to go to New England. That was expected anyway, as he has been a bargain the last few seasons with the Indianapolis Colts.
During the 2014 NFL season, Wayne made a base salary of $4 million and a signing bonus of $2.167 million. The Patriots should easily be able to afford a salary of around $3 or $4 million for the 2015 NFL season, especially since the team would be giving him a shot at another Super Bowl ring. Winning one with Tom Brady after doing it with Peyton Manning (on the Colts) would sure round out his career in the league.
While these New England Patriots rumors definitely indicate that the team is about to sign Reggie Wayne, it’s important to point out that the only official statement is that he is in town for a physical. This could be the basis from where an offer comes, but it could also cause the team to go in a different direction.
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