Patriots Should Prioritize Chargers Cut Candidates In This Order

The Patriots have obvious needs at the most important positions in football, and the Chargers could be a resource to acquire that talent.

New England has “checked in” on Los Angeles’ cut and trade candidates this week, according to the Boston Herald’s Doug Kyed. The Chargers are $25 million over the cap, which is why they allowed Austin Ekeler to reportedly agree to a deal with the Washington Commanders. They can free up more cap space by parting ways with Mike Williams, Kennan Allen, Khalil Mack and Joey Bosa.

Wide receivers and edge defenders are huge needs for the Patriots, and they have the resources to either sign or trade for those four players. This is the order in which New England should acquire them.

1. Keenan Allen
The 11-year wide receiver quickly became one of Justin Herbert’s favorite targets. He’s reached over 1,000 receiving yards in five or the past seven seasons The six-time Pro Bowl wideout still has the talent to be a No. 1 option and would make for a great security blanket due to his ability to win against man or zone coverage. Allen enters his age-32 season and battled multiple injuries throughout his Chargers career, but he’s still worth pursuing to upgrade the offense.

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2. Khalil Mack
The 33-year-old posted a career-high in sacks in 2023 with 17 and his ability to get after the quarterback still is among the best in the league. He also can dominate as a run-stopper. The 2016 Defensive Player of the Year would be a valuable asset and could serve as a mentor for emerging players like Christian Barmore and Keion White.

3. Mike Williams
Drake Maye and Jayden Daniels are acclaimed for their arm strength, and those skills could be put on display by having one of them sling it to Williams. One thing the Patriots could be checking in on is how the 29-year-old is recovering from his torn ACL that forced him to miss the majority of the 2023 season. He’s only hit over 1,000 yards twice in his seven-year career, but the Patriots coaching staff could tell themselves a story and see that Herbert dealt with inept play-callers that didn’t fully utilize his strengths nor Williams’ ability to win at the catch point. It’s a tough spot to rely on a wide receiver renowned for his physical gifts after a torn ACL, but Williams had shown glimpses of a diverse route tree that could be unlocked under offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt.

4. Joey Bosa
The elder Bosa brother is the youngest out of the four Chargers cut candidates, but his injury history is cause for concern. The 28-year-old suffered hamstring, foot, groin and multiple head injuries throughout his eight-year career. There’s no question when it comes to the 2016 Defensive Rookie of the Year and four-time Pro Bowl edge rusher. But Bosa also made boneheaded plays in key moments for the Chargers that might not be worth dealing with for first-year head coach Jerod Mayo. A different environment could suit Bosa, but if the Patriots had their choice of Chargers players, he isn’t where they should be looking.

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