The legacy of Patriots players leaving New England and joining with Peyton Manning continues. Aqib Talib has signed with the Broncos and the Pats may be looking to irk another rival - the Jets - by signing Darrelle Revis.

First, Talib.

Talib was the team's MVP through the first half of the season, shutting down nearly every number one receiver that the Patriots faced. He was also a great presence in the locker room, keeping things light and drawing much praise from his teammates.

So, how did he end up with the Broncos? Quite simply, they overpaid for him. By a lot.

We saw this coming back when Brent Grimes signed his deal for $8 million a year. That was already more than the Patriots probably wanted to spend, with their salary cap space only at $14,821,836 (after minor releases yesterday). The stakes continued to rise though. Sam Shields signed a deal worth $9.75 million annually. That already seemed to put Talib out of the Patriots reach.

Talib gets $9.5 million from the Broncos. Patriots fans can complain about how cheap the Pats are, but that is a really absurd number. For a corner that struggled pretty heavily with injuries during his time with the Pats, a commitment of that much money for that amount of time seems borderline absurd.

Still, the Broncos have PLENTY of cap room because most of the talent on their roster is on rookie contracts. It's a problem they'll have to deal with in the coming years after their current spending sprees (Good bye Demayrius Thomas and Von Miller, I guess?) but they are obviously going all in on the present.

The Patriots probably would've been willing to bend from their initial number with Talib, but matching $9.75 million is almost as impossible as it gets for New England, as that would be almost all of their current cap space.

Talib is talented, but his many question marks will have many scratching their heads over that number.

So, what is the Patriots plan now?

Apaprently, they are now going to be focusing on Darelle Revis.

Earlier today Adam Schefter mentioned the Patriots as a team to watch when Revis is released tomorrow,.

After the news that Talib was gone to Denver, Schefter seems to feel that this is even more of a possibility.

You might be asking yourself, how can the Patriots afford to bring in Revis and his $16 million price tag (if they trade for him) if they can't afford Talib's close to $10 million. Fortunately for us, the Boston Globe's Ben Volin discovered some details in Revis' current contract.

Essentially, the team can make most of that money into bonus money, give it to Revis up front, and only have his deal count for $8 million against the salary cap. That's lower than Talib's salary, and Revis is undoubtedly the better player. The problem with that plan comes next year, when if Revis plays well, his deal would jump to a $18 million cap hit.

So, the Pats could work a trade for Revis, have him on reasonable cap numbers for 2014 and chance what happens the next year. Or they could wait for him to be released as expected, and pray that they can convince the money hungry corner to come to the team he grew up hating in his NFL career.

One thing is clear, the Patriots are very interested in making something happen with Revis. If they do, the loss of Talib won't sting so bad.

Michael Saver 3/11/2014 11:19:00 PM Edit

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