Jarvis Green analysis

When thinking about Jarvis Green's eight-year career with the Patriots, two thoughts come to the forefront.

1. He was a "super sub." Whenever the Patriots needed a pinch-hitter at right defensive end for Richard Seymour, the 6-foot-3, 285-pound Green stepped in and the defense seldom seemed to miss a beat.

2. Those big sacks of Peyton Manning in the '03 playoffs. Green was at his best that day in the AFC Championship at Gillette Stadium.

With Green signing a four-year deal with the Broncos today, the Patriots lose a solid professional and a quality locker room presence. He also did impressive charity work in the community, so that is a big off-the-field void that will be felt.

From a pure football perspective, Green seemed to show he was best suited as a "super sub" in 2009, and not a full-time starter at right defensive end in the 3-4 alignment. Green had been effective over his career as a fill-in starter -- a solid option when looking to get through a stretch of games -- but he seemed to wear down at times in the full-time role (injury might have been a factor). He was pulled out of the playoff loss to the Ravens at one point because that was an area in which the Patriots were having some struggles against the run.

The Patriots have Mike Wright in that "super sub" role going forward, but the search figures to be on for that stout full-time starter. Unless second-year player Ron Brace emerges, the view from here is that it is one of the team's top needs.