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New England Patriots Reach Deal With Brandon Browner

[Photo: USATSI]

The New England Patriots have agreed to terms with suspended free agent cornerback Brandon Browner. Around 2 a.m. on March 14th, a source told me that Brandon Browner’s agent is in the final stages of getting a deal done with the Patriots.

Around seven o’clock on Friday, Browner told ESPN’s Josina Anderson of the agreement before confirming it on Twitter. The deal is for three years and carries a maximum value of $17 million.

Browner, a 2011 Pro Bowler, was suspended indefinitely last season after violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy for the second time in his career, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today.

He was also suspended four games in 2012 for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. Browner’s career was in jeopardy at that point, but he was reinstated earlier this month. Many people including me didn’t think Browner was staying in Seattle because the Seahawks front office thought he was expendable because of the solid play of Byron Maxwell at the right cornerback position.

When free agency started Browner told his camp he wanted to go to a title contender and team that had a solid secondary in place. Thursday, the Patriots brought him in for a visit and once he got there he realized he wanted to sign with New England.

At 6’4 and 220 lbs, Browner is regarded as one of if not the most physical cornerbacks in the NFL because of his size, long arms and upper body strength. He is a shut down corner who will give defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and Bill Belichick the ability to call more “Cover 0” because he is guy you can trust on the outside.

Browner, 29, played and started eight games, recording 19 tackles, one interception,  and 10 passes defended last season with Seattle. He is the second notable signing for the Patriots, as the team agreed to a two year contract with Darrelle Revis on Wednesday night. Revis and Browner, now join a cornerback group that has Alfonzo Dennard, Logan Ryan, and Kyle Arrington.  It seems like the Patriots number one goal was to improve the secondary through free agency. With these moves the Patriots are doing that very thing.