Teams have until 3:59 p.m. today — essentially up until the time free agency starts — to tender their own players who are restricted free agents or exclusive-rights free agents.
The Patriots have just one RFA this year: quarterback Brian Hoyer.
Colleague Greg Bedard has confirmed that the team has tendered Hoyer at the second-round level. This year, the second-round level is a one-year, $1.927 million deal.
It also means, however, that another team could sign Hoyer to an offer sheet, which the Patriots would have an opportunity to match, but if Hoyer went to a new team, that team would relinquish a second-round pick to New England.
As we wrote in today’s Globe, a team that loses out on the Peyton Manning Sweepstakes and doesn’t want to pony up for Green Bay’s Matt Flynn could find Hoyer an appealing option.
Since snagging him as an undrafted rookie in 2009, Hoyer has blossomed with the Patriots, and the team believes that he is ready to become a starter.
Keeping Hoyer is a smart move. If Tom Brady were to get injured, Hoyer should be ready to step right in. Teams only look to Indianapolis last year to see how valuable it is to have a solid backup quarterback.