This Patriots offseason lacks the drama of a departing coordinator or a big contract dispute. It's more about re-loading to take advantage of a roster that has earned playoff byes in four consecutive seasons without a title to show for it.
What they need
The Patriots need depth in a lot of places, but they don't have as many screaming needs as other recent offseasons. They have to find a tight end or two behind Rob Gronkowski. The roster should get healthier at defensive tackle, but depth throughout the defensive line should be a priority. Their tackle position is old. (Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich barely left the field last year at defensive end.) Their interior offensive line and wide receiver also could remain positions in flux.
On the way out?
» NT Vince Wilfork: There has been a lot of speculation that Wilfork could be a salary-cap casualty, but it's hard to see that happening. He means too much to this roster. Perhaps he'll re-work his contract.
Offseason crystal ball
We predict the Patriots will find a way to keep Talib. The organization has had such a hard time finding quality secondary play over the years, which is also why Devin McCourty is a long-term extension candidate. Edelman, Spikes and Blount should find riches elsewhere, while underrated center Ryan Wendell is a strong candidate to get a nice contract to stay around. Wilfork should ultimately stay put, and we think Amendola will, too. Still, it wouldn't be a shock if the Patriots find a way to be very active in free agency, especially at receiver. Brady only has so many years left before Belichick *really *has to make some changes.