Nov 3, 2013; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots cornerback Alfonzo Dennard (37) breaks up a pass intended for Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (88) during the third quarter at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Rumors: New England Patriots could sign Emmanuel Sanders as Julian Edelman replacement

The New England Patriots failed to come to terms with wide receiver Julian Edelman, and he’s likely not going to be wearing a Patriots jersey in 2014 now that he’s set to hit the open market. Like Wes Welker who was stolen from them in 2013, Edelman will attract attention from teams based on what they’ve seen in New England and that means another season and another receiver down for New England.

But all is not lost, as the Patriots appear to have eyes set on a guy they nearly grabbed a season ago, as ESPNBoston is reporting Emmanuel Sanders is a name to keep an eye on as free agency begins.

As for the Patriots’ possible contingency plan, one free agent to keep an eye on is Emmanuel Sanders. The Patriots signed him to a restricted free-agent offer sheet last year, but the Steelers matched it.

Sanders is one of the better receivers in a  shallow class that will see big money thrown at the likes of Eric Decker and Hakeem Nicks. Sanders will seek a similar contract, and the Patriots may consider giving it to him if they want to avoid a headache like they suffered last season thanks to their wide out situation.

Tags: Emmanuel Sanders New England Patriots NFL Free Agency 2014

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