DT - FA
Alan Branch is expected to sign a two-year, $12 million deal with the Patriots on Thursday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
This was an important signing for the Patriots defense. Branch is big at 6'6" and 350 pounds. He clogs up the middle at DT and was the key reason the Patriots ranked fourth in the NFL with only 88.4 rushing yards allowed per game.
Alan Branch has won his appeal of a four-game suspension for allegedly violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, ESPN's Field Yates reports. Branch has avoided the suspension and won't be forced to miss any games as a result.
Branch has 39 tackles and one sack on the season. While those are not strong numbers for IDP consideration, Branch is extremely important to the Patriots team defense. He is a big run stopper and would have been hard to replace if he had been suspended.
Alan Branch is reportedly facing a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, ESPN.com reports. Per the report, the defensive tackle tested positive for marijuana and is appealing the suspension. Since his anticipated sanction won't start until after the appeal is heard, Branch is expected to play this coming Sunday against the Jets.
This could be a big hit for the New England defense. Branch is a key run stopper for the defense and will be hard to replace.
The Patriots have reinstated suspended DT Alan Branch. Branch's team-imposed ban lasted one week. A reason was never provided.
The team needs Branch anchoring the defensive line. He is a strong run stopper and last season finished with 35 tackles, one sack and two forced fumbles.
Defensive lineman Alan Branch has agreed to a contract to return to the New England Patriots in 2015, the big-bodied defender's agent tweeted on Saturday night. The deal is for two years with a maximum value of $6.6 million, a source confirmed to ESPNBoston.com's Mike Reiss. Branch, an unrestricted free agent, played in eight regular-season games after joining the Patriots during the 2014 season. Branch, who turned 30 this past December, was originally drafted 33rd overall in 2007 by the Arizona Cardinals before stints with the Seattle Seahawks and Buffalo Bills. After being released by the Bills in late August, Branch was inked to a one-year deal in October and played 160 defensive snaps during the regular season.
Alan Branch gives the Patriots size on their defensive line and helped provide strength against power running teams. He can play 3-4 end and defensive tackle, and will return as part of the defensive line rotation.