Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 4/8/13
Nfl_oakland_raiders_b21f
The Patriots seem to bring in at least one veteran on the defensive line each offseason. Gerard Warren, Mike Wright and Derrick Burgess are three former Patriots that immediately come to mind who would fit that bill. Now too does former Raiders defensive tackle Tommy Kelly. Kelly, 32, agreed to a two-year deal with the Patriots on Monday, just  two weeks after Oakland released him. Before being cut, Kelly had played his entire nine-year career with the Raiders, racking up 420 tackles, 34.5 sacks and 26 tackles for loss during that time. Kelly was a productive interior lineman during his first six seasons, but it wasn’t until he played alongside former Patriot Richard Seymour that his true potential began to shine through. In each of his first two seasons playing next to Seymour, Kelly recorded a combined 14.5 sacks, which unsurprisingly were the two highest sack totals (seven in 2010 and 7.5 in 2011) of his career. Those numbers plummeted back to reality in 2012, though, as Seymour struggled to stay healthy and missed eight games. His absence resulted in Kelly failing to consistently pressure the quarterback, ending up with just 1.5 sacks on the season. Kelly won’t have Seymour by his side in New England, but playing alongside Vince Wilfork up the middle should have a similar impact. Wilfork is still one of the most dominant interior linemen in football and he demands multiple blockers on nearly every snap, offering Kelly more opportunities to cause havoc in the backfield. At his elder age, there’s no guaranteeing that Kelly will play the majority of the snaps or even usurp the starting role from Kyle Love. But adding him to a rotation with Love, Brandon Deaderick and — if he can stay healthy — Myron Pryor would give the Patriots some depth and much-needed help in the pass rush. Kelly isn’t going to be a complete game changer for the Patriots, but he has the potential to be an impact player and will at the very least provide a veteran presence along the defensive line. Have a question for Luke Hughes? Send it to him via Twitter at @LukeFHughes or send it here. Photo via Facebook/Tommy Kelly
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Geno Smith laughed at being ranked last in QB poll

Penn State trash talks Notre Dame Twitter over 'Rudy'

Report: Aroldis Chapman unlikely to be traded

Mets’ trade for Carlos Gomez called off despite reports

Report: Rangers to acquire Cole Hamels from the Phillies

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

WATCH: Tulo hits first home run with Blue Jays

NFLPA officially files Brady lawsuit, wants QB to play Week 1

Mariota’s lack of red flags was a concern for NFL teams

Tigers 'rebooting,' make David Price available in trade

Jerry Jones backs Roger Goodell amid Deflategate controversy

Brady, agent contacted AT&T in attempt to retrieve deleted texts

Texas QB commit has great anti-Oklahoma T-shirt

WATCH: Tim Tebow does monster leg workout

Farrell: Sandoval's conditioning 'continues to be addressed'

Revis won't wear Super Bowl ring around Jets teammates

Former NBAer Vin Baker now works at Starbucks

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Mike Leach compares Deflategate to Kardashians

All Panthers home games will also be broadcast in Spanish

Giants owner calls Pierre-Paul debacle ‘very disappointing’

Panthers WR cited for marijuana paraphernalia, had child in car

Bruins-Canadiens Winter Classic details announced

Jay Bruce and Carlos Gonzalez: Twin trade chips

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Next summer's top 10 NBA free agents

Who is the NL's new top shortstop?

Cardinals HC Bruce Arians calls Jen Welter a 'trailblazer'

Mets still act like a small-market team

Tom Brady: I did nothing wrong

NFL upholds Tom Brady's suspension, legal battle likely

Cardinals hire first female NFL coach

Larry Bird: Michael Jordan would kill me in 1-on-1 now

Seau family: HOF broke their word

Kobe to see time at power forward next year

Mike Pettine not ruling out Manziel

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker