Patriots reportedly set to meet with Matt Shaughnessy, Shelley Smith
|03.12.14 at 12:57 pm ET|
In addition to the news that the Patriots have met with free agent wide receiver Brandon LaFell, word has come out Wednesday morning that New England has free agent visits lined up with outside linebacker/defensive lineman Matt Shaughnessy and offensive lineman Shelley Smith.
Shaughnessy is a 6-foot-5, 285-pounder who has been in the league for five seasons — four with the Raiders (2009-12) and one with the Cardinals. The 27-year-old has 18.5 career sacks, with his best year coming in 2010 when he had seven with Oakland. (He also had a career-high 43 tackles that year, as well as one pass defensed.) Field Yates of ESPN first reported the move.
In addition, the Patriots are meeting with the 26-year-old Smith, a sixth-round pick of the Texans in 2010 who has played with the Rams the last two years. According to the analytical site Pro Football Focus, the 6-foot-4, 312-pounder is known more as a run blocker (+12.3) than pass blocker (-6.0). He could play right guard if the Patriots are forced to do some shuffling, particularly if center Ryan Wendell leaves in free agency. (In that scenario, Smith would become the right guard while Dan Connolly would slide over to center.) Tom E. Curran of Comcast Sports Net first reported the news.