Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders writes on the issues facing each team in the AFC East, which is posted on ESPNBoston.com (Insider content). When Schatz touches on the Patriots, it's all about Vince Wilfork.
"By taking advantage of the shifting economic market for football players, there might be a way for the Patriots to actually lose Wilfork and still improve on defense," Schatz writes.
Schatz's main point is that with more NFL teams running 3-4 defenses, players like Wilfork have become valuable commodities.
With this in mind, he suggests the possibility of trading Wilfork and then remaking the defense.
"Perhaps they could work out some sort of sign-and-trade deal with another team in exchange for a package of draft picks that is significant but not quite as unrealistic as the two first-rounders it takes to sign away a franchise player," Schatz writes. "The Patriots could use those picks to reshape their defense as a 4-3 scheme. This type of deal also would allow the Patriots to decide where Wilfork lands -- and keep him out of the AFC East."