Report: Patriots Sign WR Emmanuel Sanders to Offer Sheet

Emmanuel Sanders could be in a Patriots uniform next season. (Photo: US Presswire)

NEPD Staff Writer: Tony Santorsa

The New England Patriots have gone through a complete overhaul of their wide receiver corps this offseason as all the wide receivers that are currently under contract, not one of them caught a pass from Tom Brady last season.

Add another wide receiver to that list as the Patriots have reportedly signed restricted free agent Emmanuel Sanders to an offer sheet.

The way that restricted free agency works is that the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sanders’ current team, will now have five days to match New England’s offer and ultimately keep Sanders. However, Pittsburgh can simply decline to match the deal and will let Sanders join the Patriots. If Sanders does end up signing with New England, then the Patriots will forfeit a third-round pick to Pittsburgh.

The Patriots would only be left with two picks before the seventh round of the 2013 NFL Draft.

Per Michael David Smith of ProFootballTalk, the contract is a one-year deal and there hasn’t been any details released regarding the finical aspect of the contract.

Sanders played in 16 games this past season for the Steelers as he recorded 44 receptions on 74 targets for 626 yards while scoring one touchdown. The most impressive characteristic to Sanders’ game is his explosiveness as he averaged 14.2 yards per-reception while averaging 5.0 yards-after-catch.

If the Steelers don’t decide to match New England’s offer, then Sanders will join Danny Amendola, Donald Jones and Michael Jenkins as new-comers to New England’s revamped wide receiver corps.

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42 Responses to “Report: Patriots Sign WR Emmanuel Sanders to Offer Sheet”

  1. kdog says:

    IMO we still need a WR. This signing (assuming it goes through) brings us up to par. But we were playing Deion Branch in the postseason last year.

    1. Welker –> Amendola
    2. Lloyd –> Sanders
    3. Edelman
    4. Branch –> ?

    Unless Jones, Jenkins, or one of the PS guys comes on strong, there’s definitely room for a WR to groom.

    • Jeff M says:

      Donald Jones would be the #3 or 4 but I agree…we still need to draft one to develop.

  2. ryan says:

    I can not see any team trading for Mallet this year. His trade value (if any will be determined by his pre season.
    Love this signing! For a few years our offence has needed a deep threat and Sanders provides it. It was a shame to watch Lloyd create no separation when he when deep. I have really liked what the pats have done in free agency. Remember at the start of the 2011 season all the pundits were saying this was a rebuilding year for the pats?
    I think with the young players getting better we may be the best team in the league this year. Our improvement will come from players like Hightower, Jones, Vereen, Dennard and Hernandez producing more this year. If we get some production from a few player such as – Ras-I, Tavon Wilson, Jake Bequette, Armstead, Francis or Kelly then maybe a superbowl with San Fan is in the tea leaves!

  3. acm says:

    Whether they get Sanders or not, I’d be fine either way. With Edelman back, I think a Hopkins, Dobson, Rogers-like WR would probably be a bigger need anyway. And there is some deep-round talent there too – Wilson, Harrison, Mellette, Gardner etc.

  4. JV says:

    Fills a need if they get him but I really dont get giving up the 3rd pick and then only signing him to a 1 year deal.

  5. patsfan says:

    if we get sanders I would still trade back #29 for a 2nd and a 4th. Then I would go WR (X type), DT (future vince replacement) with the 2nds, LB ( able to cover TEs) and OL ( Interior) with the 4ths and CBs and FS with the 7ths (tall above 6 foot) and call it a good draft.

  6. cc says:

    3WR+another on offer. 2DLineman. A Safety……. A fist full of rookies tossed all around……….its years gonna be interesting.

  7. bob says:

    Have to admit they enter the draft from a position of strength addressing most of their concerns. I hope they keep the 2 top pics and just use them. The hit-rate just drops too low as you go lower in rounds. If they just use the top 2 pics on D, would be nice. get 1 starter and one reserve and call it a good draft. They do so well with UFA, they should pounce on that post draft and fill in the blanks for the Preseason. I hope they draft any mix of DT,DE or DB in top 2 rounds. Nice offseason. Hope Gronk heals. Hit the Go button…

  8. td says:

    If they get Sanders, Pat’s can trade up, trade down, stay pat and draft best available instead of being under the gun to fill need.

    Don’t get me wrong, they still need: DBacks, DLine and a WR or two, but it is not a glaring need.

    This could allow them to get a: pass rusher, cover LB or a good CB in first two rounds.

    • Russell Easterbrooks says:

      This really changes things with the Draft, if BB does not trade back, and stays at #29 and #59 , you may see him draft, Cornellius Carradine 1st and OG/C Barrett Jones, 2nd. Both players may start the season on the PUP list, but this allows BB alot of possibilities, with his Roster moves, with two super future players!!

  9. Jim R says:

    Edelman just signed, WR all set Boys.
    Amendola,Sanders (Provided the steelers do not natch), Jones,Jenkins, Kiss the dreams of drafting a WR early, They will however draft one in the 7th round.

    • AM says:

      I’ll wager they still pick one early–even if the Steelers don’t match, that puts two of the team’s top four receivers (Sanders, Edelman) on one-year deals, which puts them right back where they started next year. (Plus I don’t think Jenkins even makes the team.) I think this will be a Matt Light-Nate Solder situation, where they draft the next starter a year early. Given the WR depth in this draft, this is the year to do it.

    • Bruschi54 says:

      I think Ebert is going to make more of an impact than people think as 4th WR, and agree that Jenkins will not make the team. Unless Vacarro or Austin slip to #29 they will trade back and pick a WR on day 2 because of all the one year deals. Hope there is still enough $$$ in the piggy bank to go get Abraham.

      • J H TARBORO says:

        i said this on mutiple occasions and he is faster than Amendola with very good hands.

    • J H TARBORO says:

      i hope the Steelers match the offer, i don’t think the Pats should give up a 3rd round for 1yr. deal. J.Edleman re signing, i said it before, when in doubt the Pats go backwards.

    • J H TARBORO says:

      unfortunately no we’re not all set.

  10. Breazy says:

    Can’t they freakin’ ever target a receiver taller than 5’11”?!?!

    They could get someone in the draft; Hunter, Dobson…lots of choices.
    They could pick up a free agent for the same salary and not have to lose #91 pick.

    Is Sanders going to outproduce Brandon Lloyd? Never did before.

    • Jim R says:

      Jenkins is 6-3

    • td says:

      How’s 6-6, 265 and 6-1, 250 for you->Gronk and Hernandez. What the H*E*L*L is the fascination with WR’s that could play in the NBA? Maybe we can get Paul Pierce and KG to play WR.

      Regardless of how tall they are they still have to read defenses and adjust their route and get open in tune with #12. Not many guys around can do that, especially rooks.

      • Breazy says:

        @ td,
        It’s about mismatches. TE’s create mismatches for LB.
        X-receivers have to create mismatches for CB.
        A typical NFL CB is 5’11”, 190, and runs about a 4.5 40.
        3-cone isn’t as important for the X-WR who is streaking to stretch the field. Height is. Look at Julian Jones, AJ Green, Calvin Johnson (AKA Megatron), Brandon Marshall, Larry Fitzgerald. They all score TDs with a long yards per catch by being fast and having bigger frames than the typical CB they are defended by.

        • cc says:

          Well Said.

          Looks like TB12 has been put on the spot…
          1. Edelman who was&still is respectfully “Not a Starter”.
          2. Jones, a Buffalo Bills “Green” Project. New 2 Brady.
          3. Jenkins……Older, Slower Vet….Not gonna be prolific thats for sure. New 2 Brady.
          4. Amendola, promising anyway. He has the “replacement binky” label on him and slight durability concerns. New 2 Brady.
          5. Sanders, is a Pittsburgh Steelers cast away. NOT true upper caliber material, probably a #3 WR.( Maybe 2-1/2 lol ).
          & how many new 1-yr contracts are on the books thus far nevermind ongoing team contracts ready to end at the end of this next upcoming year?
          *I’d say Brady has his hands full with trying to insert any of the above aforementioned Wide Outs in between A-Hern & M. Hoomanawanui.
          ( I suspect the Meat Head gRONK will be out 1/2 the year…..he can’t be counted on.)

        • Nuf Ced says:

          I think your mixing 2 unrelated attributes, speed and height

          Long speed can get open regardless of size; Sanders at 4.41 in a one on one press should be just as able to out pace a defender as any 6’3″+ receiver. Hence why guys like Reggie Wayne and Steve Smith consistently are double digit in the 20+ yrd reception list.

          Height is the advantage in the jump ball situation; allows the QB to throw it above the defender. Of course a 6’3″ WR w/ a 36″ vert will get to roughly the same peak point as a 5’11” Sanders w/ a 39.5″ vert (arm length being variable). In the jump ball situation speed is not the advantage; Gronk at 6’6″ split out on a CB would be just as much of a mismatch.

          Yes all the names you mentioned are absolute athletic freaks but they are also rare (see – there are maybe 10 guys in the league that fit your description). Many of these guys on a non-rookie contract will cost 8%-13% of your cap – is that percentage of cap worth a player that AT MOST touches the ball 8 times a game? I say no but that is my opinion. I would love someone to come up with the football equivalent of WAR

  11. Russell Easterbrooks says:

    I would guess Sanders deal is 3mil. for 1yr with a restricted status. My guess is the steelers will match it, BUT??
    Sanders is 5’11” 180

    • cc says:

      Id love them to match it even though I doubt it.
      They know we need WIDE OUTS, so Dangle the carrot long enough & BB will bite in a pinch.
      If their smart, they’ll match it, run with him this year, beef his stats & Re-Dangle the carrot at BB again…because we’ll still need 2 WR next year as well!

  12. Nick says:

    How tall is Sanders?

  13. Jim R says:

    Best 3rd round reciever in the draft. I like it There is you starting WR now back to Defense. I believe part of this because they have something for Mallett.

    • Russell Easterbrooks says:

      Agreed, I believe you will see Mallett and our 1st pick #29 going to Tampa, for a 2nd #43, 4th #112,4th #126 AND a 3d next year.

      • Ken W says:

        Are you getting this from some where? Has there been reports of this type of deal? Or are you just thinking it would be a good deal?

        I would be fine with this, lets BB load up on middle round picks and gives him more ammo to move around and get what he wants.

        If this did happen I would want them to get Ryan Nassib QB, Syracuse as a guy to groom for the post Brady era.

      • Bruschi54 says:

        This trade would be great for the Pats, let’s hope

        • Ryan says:

          Why would this trade be good for the Pats? Mallett should be able to fetch a 2nd rounder next year, either now or after the upcoming season? Sending pick 29 for 43, 112 and 126 alone is not quite a favorable deal and Mallett should be worth more than a 3rd next year (at this point). I bet CLE would trade their 2nd rounder in 2014 for Mallett, for example.

        • Russell Easterbrooks says:

          It’s possible Cleveland may be willing to go a 2nd next year for Mallett, which could be from #36- #46, but I think its alittle to much.

      • Russell Easterbrooks says:

        I’m just projecting this as a possible deal. But if Mallett is not the future in New England, move him if you can. I think BB like’s Kafka better, if you watch his tape he looks Bradyish to me.
        This deal with Tampa, is very fair for both teams, the 3d next year will be around 70th -85th depending on Tampa Won loss record. The two 4th round picks can be very good players at a low cost rookie contract.
        With 2 second round picks , (#43 and #59) ,the Patriots can get quality players, also at good rookie contracts.

      • cc says:

        #29 & Mallet! For a bunch of junk! In the mortal word’s of Jerry O’Neil. …………….
        “ARE YOU HIGH”!!!!!!!!!!!!!@

  14. PatsFanInCO says:

    Surprising it’s only a one-year deal…

    • Russell Easterbrooks says:

      The one year deal is so the Patriots can keep the cap money low, yet higher for the Steelers to match. If I was to guess, I would say they offer him 3 mil. for one year. The loss of the 3d round pick will save the Patriots about, 1mil. a year in draft pick contract money.

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