By Danny Picard
BOSTON — It’s either falling apart, or business as usual in Foxboro right now. Excuse me while I put my money on the latter.
Look, I’m not here to be a cheerleader. I’m just here to remind you. I’m here to break this thing down for what it actually is. It’s a business, and Bill Belichick is going to continue to treat it as such.
That’s never been more evident this week, as the New England Patriots saw several key pieces agree to deals with other teams before free agency even officially began.
Malcolm Butler and Dion Lewis are headed to the Tennessee Titans. Danny Amendola is on his way to the Miami Dolphins. And Nate Solder is now a New York Giant.
By the time you read this, maybe the Pats have lost more players to free agency. Maybe they’ve even signed a free agent or two. What we know is that the 2018 Patriots will look different. And in the heat of the moment, I’ll be honest, it doesn’t feel like a “good” different. But it never does. Ever.
I wanted Butler, Lewis, Amendola, and Solder to stay. At least, I didn’t want to see all of them leave. But if I gave you a list of players that I had wished Belichick never parted ways with, we’d be here for a while, and I’d be reading off a Pro-Bowl caliber roster.
That list would be nostalgic. It would also be a reminder of how much has changed in Foxboro over the years.