BREAKING: Patriots not picking up Vince Wilfork's option

Matthew West/Boston Herald
The New England Patriots will not pick up long-time defensive tackle Vince Wilfork's 2015 option, making him an unrestricted free agent and essentially ending his tenure with the team. The Patriots will save roughly $8 million in cap space. He also had an option for 2016 in his contract.

Wilfork reported the news himself via his Twitter account.

Wilfork will be 34 once the 2015-16 starts and with a cap hit as high as he had, the move makes sense especially when one considers that the team wants to bring both Darrelle Revis and Devin McCourty back on long-term deals.

The unquestioned leader of the defense for close to 10 years, Wilfork won the Super Bowl with New England in his rookie year and again last year. Assuming the team does not bring him back on a much cheaper deal, he ends his Patriots career a champion. Wilfork has established himself as one of the best defensive tackles in football and played at a very high level in 2014-15 after coming off an achilles injury that sidelined him for most of 2013-14.

It remains to be seen what the Patriots will do to replace him. If they decide to stay in-house, Sealver Siliga would be a great option, as he is still under contract for next year. They could bring back Alan Branch on the cheap as well.

No doubt Wilfork can still play. He will find a home somewhere. Wherever that is, New England fans across the globe wish him nothing but the best. He has been a class act throughout his career and embodied everything the Patriots wanted in a player.

This should probably be updated by someone soon, but here are a few of Wilfork's greatest moments as a Patriot.

Man, I'm sad.

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