Cornerback just became a more pressing need for the New England Patriots.
The Patriots are releasing veteran cornerback Jalen Mills, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Friday. The move will create about $ 5 million in cap space for New England, per Schefter.
Mills' release is a bit of a surprise after the Patriots signed him to a four-year, $ 24 million contract in 2021 free agency. The former Philadelphia Eagle was New England's starting right cornerback for 16 games in 2021 and started 10 games in 2022.
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Mills battled injuries late last season, however, and missed the Patriots' final six games, which may have led to the team parting ways with him this offseason.
With Mills out of the picture, New England's cornerback room consists of Jonathan Jones, Marcus Jones, Jack Jones, Myles Bryant, Quandre Mosely, Shaun Wade and Rodney Randle.
Jonathan Jones is the most established player in that group by far (Marcus and Jack Jones are both entering their second seasons with the Patriots), so New England definitely could benefit from adding either a veteran corner in free agency or using one of its top 2023 NFL Draft picks on a CB -- or both.