Thursday, April 11, 2013

AFC exec: Sanders wouldn't be 1-year rental for Pats


The New England Patriots officially submitted a tender offer to restricted free agent Emmanuel Sanders on Wednesday.

New England's submission, originally reported by Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, was for one year at $2.5 million, a sizable offer for a No. 3 wide receiver.

And while New England would most certainly benefit from another young, talented receiver in its depleted repertoire, a high ranking AFC executive told Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports that the Pats may have more in mind than just the 2013 season. (photo: CJ Buckwalter, Flickr)

"I don't believe for a second that Bill Belichick is giving up a third-round pick for Sanders for only one year," the executive told Cole. "Yeah, if it was October and you were desperate for a specific guy because you thought he would make a difference, maybe.

"But Sanders isn't that type of guy. Nice potential, he has flashed some ability, but you don't do this."

The move, if Pittsburgh does not match it, would certainly help bolster the Pats' thin depth chart at the position and would give New England plenty more options in terms of X's and O's come September.

Cole portrayed the move by New England as a poker-style play that looked to push the short-stacked Steelers out of the pot. Then, the Pats could retain Sanders for not only less than he's likely worth, but also sign him to a multi-year deal.

Sanders amassed more than 600 yards receiving last season for Pittsburgh and will likely be a huge loss for the team given the departure of Mike Wallace to Miami. The Patriots' offer being a power move seems very likely given the Steelers' salary cap issues, as the team currently has only $1.9 million to work with.

Pittsburgh has five days to match New England's offer.

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