BOSTON (CBS) — The New England Patriots are trying to beef up their running back corps while also taking away from one of their divisional foes.
The Patriots have extended a restricted free agent offer sheet to Buffalo running back Mike Gillislee, according to The NFL Network and NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport:
The Bills can match New England’s offer over the next five days, but if they don’t, the Patriots would only have to send them a fifth-round pick for Gillislee’s services.
Gillislee played in 15 games for Buffalo last season, racking up 577 yards and eight touchdowns on 101 carries. In his three NFL seasons, the back has rushed for 865 yards and 11 touchdowns in 23 games. He has just one fumble on 154 career carries.
If Gillislee joins the Patriots, he’d join a few other former Bills who have crossed the divisional lines in the last two seasons. The Patriots signed unrestricted free agent cornerback Stephon Gilmore away from Buffalo earlier this offseason, and were able to get wide receiver Chris Hogan with a restricted free agent offer last offseason.
Gillislee would join Dion Lewis, James White, Rex Burkhead and Brandon Bolden on New England’s running back depth chart. The acquisition would also likely put an end to any chance of LeGarrette Blount re-joining the team.