Bill Belichick wasn't hiding it. The Patriots are examining all 31 opposing rosters in the NFL to try to track who will become available on cutdown day, and who might only be available via trade.
Sometimes the line separating those two categories is blurred. It's a guessing game to try to figure out which players will garner interest on waivers and which won't, which teams will be aggressive enough to make a trade and which won't.
And while the Patriots are surely on the lookout for help at receiver, that won't be the only place they're looking. What about quarterback?
NFL Media reported on Wednesday that there could be a handful of signal-callers available, and one of them has some experience in a Patriots-like system.
Savage, 28, is the name that sticks out. A fourth-round pick of the Texans in 2014 (taken 73 picks after Jimmy Garoppolo), he signed a one-year deal worth $1.5 million with the Saints.
The Patriots have seen their share of Savage, having practiced against him in joint sessions with the Texans last summer. Savage then looked good in their preseason matchup, completing eight of nine passes for 98 yards and a touchdown.
Coming from the Texans system under former Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien, Savage would have some familiarity with Patriots concepts. Now in New Orleans, he's with an organization that has shown in the past it's willing to deal with the Patriots.
This preseason, Savage has completed 23 of 31 passes for 222 yards (7.2 yards per attempt), no touchdowns and no picks. Last regular season, in seven games as a starter, Savage completed 56 percent of his passes for 1,412 yards (6.3 yards per attempt), five touchdowns, six picks and 21 sacks.
For his career in the regular season, Savage has completed 57.5 percent of his throws for exactly 2,000 yards (6.35 yards per attempt), five touchdowns and seven picks. He's started nine games total.
When it comes to any potential interest the Patriots might have in Savage, there are a number of questions that would need answering.
Is he viewed as a starting-caliber player? Would he be a better option than 32-year-old Brian Hoyer (21-for-32, 268 yards, 8.4 yards per attempt, two touchdowns, one pick this preseason), now or in the near future? Would he be able to function relatively quickly in the Patriots offense? What do the Patriots think of Danny Etling's long-term potential?
While the Patriots don't have a glaring need for another passer, they should have enough information on Savage to have an idea of whether or not he has the ability to start someday.
And they may very well feel he doesn't. But the Patriots exist in a league where capable quarterbacks rarely become available in free agency, and they deal with a draft that is consistently a crapshoot.
Maybe Savage, if he can be had for a reasonable price, is worth a look for a team that doesn't yet appear to have its next in line. If he's truly on the bubble, he may be available for a song.