Adrian Clayborn

Brett Davis/USA Today Sports

Report: Patriots 'in the mix' for Falcons pass rusher Adrian Clayborn

John Tomase
March 14, 2018 - 1:49 pm

With a steady exodus of talent leaving New England -- Danny Amendola, Nate Solder, Malcom Butler, Dion Lewis -- it's only a matter of time before the Patriots acquire a player of note. One possibility?

Pass-rushing defensive end Adrian Clayborn of the Falcons.

According to ESPN, the Patriots "appear to be" in the mix for his services, alongside the Colts, Buccaneers and Browns. Clayborn recorded 9.5 sacks last year and would give the Patriots the pass-rushing presence they've lacked since sending Chandler Jones to the Cardinals in 2016.

The 6-foot-3, 281-pounder turns 30 in July and is coming off his best season. A former first-round pick of the Bucs in 2011 (No. 20 overall), he recorded 7.5 sacks as a rookie, a total he did not match until this season's career high. Six of this year's sacks came in one monster game against the Cowboys in November.

Clayborn did not play in Super Bowl LI vs. the Patriots because of a torn biceps suffered earlier in the playoffs against the Seahawks. He is considered somewhat weak against the run, but the Patriots need pressure and he can bring it.

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