Danny Amendola, Dion Lewis both want to return to Pats
Danny Amendola and Dion Lewis, two key contributors to the Patriots' Super Bowl LII run, are both free agents this offseason. Thankfully for the team, they both expressed their desire to return today.
While the running back and the receiver both acknowledged that the NFL is a business first--and that the Patriots under Bill Belichick are one of the NFL's most ruthless franchises--the main focus of their comments was how much they loved playing in New England and their hope that they could work out a deal to keep playing in Foxborough.
ESPN's Mike Reiss got the following response from Amendola, who was speaking at Bryant College, on Tuesday. "I'm a free agent this year, so let's say -- the unknown. We'll see what happens. I definitely want to be here. To tell you the truth, I don't want to leave. But it's a business. I've learned that." Lewis, for his part (also per Reiss), said that "I love it here...At the same time, it's a business. Hopefully it will work out, but at the same time, you can't really think that way. You have to take care of yourself and your family..."
Though the Pats have other capable offensive weapons on the roster, retaining Lewis and Amendola would be a pair of smart moves. Lewis has established himself as one of the league's most nimble runners, and he showed surprising durability in a featured role this past season, leading the Pats with nearly 900 rushing yards. Amendola, meanwhile, has become New England's primary playoff threat--he racked up 112 yards in the divisional round, 82 yards and 2 TDs in the AFC Championship Game, and a whopping 152 yards in the Super Bowl. Both players have also taken significant pay cuts and competed behind crowded depth charts to make an impact in New England, demonstrating admirable commitment to the franchise.
We'll have to wait and see whether or not the Patriots choose to keep Amendola, Lewis, or both around for next year. But based on all they've done for the team, their value to the roster, and their desire to stay in Foxborough, Belichick and the Pats would be wise to make them decent offers.