Patriots, Joe Thuney Were Never Close To Extension

The Patriots surprised everyone last year when they used the franchise tag on Joe Thuney. Often times, the tag is used as a bridge towards an extension. But, in this case, the two sides have yet to make real progress. The Patriots have never been close on a multi-year deal with the standout guard, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic

Thuney is set to reach the open market in March and Howe anticipates that he’ll seek something in the range of $14MM per year. A five-year, $70MM deal would position him as the highest-paid left guard in the NFL, besting Andrew Norwell‘s $66.5MM contract. Following the tag, Thuney played on one-year, $14.78MM deal in 2020.

Ideally, the Patriots would like to keep Thuney, but the numbers crunch might not allow for it. And, historically, the Patriots have been willing to let key free agents walk when the price gets too rich. They have a solid track record for drafting interior linemen, so they could theoretically let Thuney leave, boost their compensatory draft pick calculation, and replace him with someone younger/cheaper.

Thuney, 29 in November, has started in all 80 of his games for the Pats over the last four seasons. In 2018 and 2019, he graded out as one of the five best offensive guards in the NFL, per Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics. He slipped ever so slightly this past season, placing him at No. 10.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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13 comments on “Patriots, Joe Thuney Were Never Close To Extension

  1. bhd360

    It’s been a pleasure, Joe. Doubt he’s back. Thankfully Onwenu looked fantastic this year.

  2. riffraff

    This may be picky but ” were never close” seems like negotiations are off and he has already signed somewhere else. Should read like the statement few sentences in.. have yet to make any real progress. Its ongoing not past tense.

    • Spike1122

      Pretty sure “were never close” was referring to last year when they placed the tag on him.

      • riffraff

        hmm – I didn’t read it like that but I can see that interpretation. I take back my criticism , although I think if something can be read multiple ways it could be written clearer. . Good catch Spike

    • emarque

      This happens every year. They should have traded him and got a 3rd round pick

    • chris redsox69

      Agree Carlsarn. We will watch at best a 500 club for the next 10 plus years or until another Elite type QB comes around and can carry a team. Craft and BB are to cheap. To spend on good players. So the beat will go on.

      • rkmarx

        Too cheap? Did you know that there’s a salary cap? Did you know that the Patriots are near the cap every year? I guess haters gonna hate without facts, though. The Patriots tend to prefer 2 good players to 1 great player and 1 dud.

  3. DetroitDave84

    He’s gone and it’s not even up for discussion. They will get a 3rd round compensatory pick back. The so called “Patriot Way”. I think TB should sign him! LOL

  4. CoachWe

    IMHO, Pats will trade out of 1st round for more 2nd, 3rd & 4th rounders. During these rounds, I see the Pats addressing this need with an IOL & OT. Additionally, I see them grabbing a TE, an Edge and an interior DL. The Pats will sign their WR, but there are some very good WR’s available in rounds 4 or 5 this year.

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