Patriots Free Agency 2012: New England Needs Help At Wide Receiver

The New England Patriots made it to the Super Bowl for the second time in the last five years, and just like last time, they lost to the New York Giants. The Patriots have one of the league's top offenses, despite the lack of a solid No. 1 wide receiver, but their defense was a major problem for the team throughout the majority of the 2011 season. Even though they are likely going to dominate the division again in 2012, there are plenty of holes to address in the depth chart.

The Patriots have a handful of free agents that are likely going to be leaving the team when free agency opens in a day. Wide receiver Wes Welker got the franchise tag, but Deion Branch, Andre Carter, BenJarvus Green-Ellis and defensive end Andre Carter are all going to test the market. Luckily, the Patriots have a decent amount of money to throw around this year.

The biggest need for the team is to find some good wide receivers. Branch and Chad Ochocinco aren't nearly good enough to be considered No. 1 receivers and even though the team uses tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez almost like wide receivers, a player like Brandon Lloyd or Vincent Jackson would be really beneficial to the team. A pass rusher, especially Mario Williams, would go a long way for the defense as well and the team also needs help in the secondary. Brandon Carr could help at cornerback while a safety like Reggie Nelson could help at safety.

For more free agency updates, go to SB Nation's Patriots blog, Pats Pulpit.

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