Latest On Patriots OL Michael Onwenu

With Michael Onwenu set to hit free agency in a few weeks, the Patriots offensive lineman is currently operating without an agent. The lineman recently informed NFL teams that he has “terminated his prior relationship” with representatives Roosevelt Barnes and Jovan Barnes, per Mike Florio of NFL Players Association records also show that Onwenu doesn’t currently have an agent.

This could end up being a non-story. After all, players need to wait five days after terminating representation before hiring a new agent, per Florio. However, there’s also the possibility that the lineman could simply be looking to represent himself. With rookie contracts becoming more and more standard, we’ve seen a handful of first-year players enter the NFL without representation. However, it’s extremely rare for a veteran to operate without an agent, especially when they’re set to hit free agency for the first time in their career.

Onwenu has spent his entire career in New England. The former sixth-round pick found himself in and out of the starting lineup in 2021, but he started all 32 of his appearances over the past two years. Listed as a tackle in 2023, Pro Football Focus ranked Onwenu 29th among 81 qualifiers this past season. The lineman ranked top-10 at his position in each of his first three seasons in the league.

The 26-year-old may simply be gearing up to sign with the highest bidder in free agency. The Patriots apparently remain an option to retain the offensive lineman, with executive Eliot Wolf telling reporters today that the latest development about Onwenu’s representation doesn’t change anything for the organization.

“It doesn’t impact us,” Wolf said (via ESPN’s Mike Reiss). “Mike is a core player for us. It’s no secret we want to try to keep Mike, and it will just be a little bit of a wrinkle dealing with him. Mike is really smart, he’s introspective, he’s thoughtful, and he understands; he knows what he wants, which is always good when you’re dealing with a player. He’s certainly someone we view as a cornerstone for us.”

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