FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- In the 2013 offseason, New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick referred to the team's turnover at wide receiver as a "redo" because other than Julian Edelman, everyone else was pretty much a newcomer to the team. Now comes the 2016 version, which isn't as extreme, but is the most notable part of the team's early approach to unrestricted free agency.
On Friday, all signs point to the Patriots executing an offer sheet for restricted free agent Chris Hogan (Bills) as well as making a proposal to unrestricted free agent Rod Streater (Raiders).
Hogan and Streater wouldn't be high-profile additions at receiver like Marvin Jones (Lions) and Mohamed Sanu (Falcons) would have been, but for a team carefully managing its budget with big-ticket extensions in mind for a core of defenders whose contracts expire after 2016, the duo offers a combination of on-field upside and fiscal responsibility that has made them early free-agent targets for New England.
What the Patriots clearly are trying to do is build their depth chart with some experience so they aren't locked in to drafting a receiver if the right pass-catcher isn't there. Landing Hogan and Streater would help in that area, as Edelman, Danny Amendola, Keshawn Martin, Aaron Dobson and Chris Harper are the top returning players on the depth chart.
However, Amendola's status on the roster might not be too secure, as he is due to earn $5 million in 2016 and count $6.8 million on the salary cap. If the Patriots ask him to reduce his salary for the second year in a row, and Amendola balks, is that the end of the line for him with the Patriots? This also looks like make-or-break time for Dobson, the 2013 second-round pick, while Harper -- who made the team last year as an undrafted rookie out of Cal -- remains a bit of a wild card as a developmental player.
These are some of the dynamics in play.
As for Streater, he is reportedly scheduled to visit the Jets on Friday. If he never makes it to New York, it will be a strong indication that the Patriots are moving closer to a revamped look at receiver.