Receiver David Patten adds a veteran presence at a position where the team is young and also has an uncertain timeline regarding the return of the injured Wes Welker.
Since Patten was out of football in 2009 after being cut by the Cleveland Browns, it would be a stretch to call him a lock for a roster spot. But this isn't one of those sign-and-retire type contracts. The Patriots saw enough of Patten in a workout to believe he could possibly help -- at the very least in offseason work.
Another aspect of the Patten signing that is noteworthy is the locker room dynamic.
After a season in which the Patriots didn't always seem to have all 53 players pulling in the same direction, the 35-year-old Patten brings a professionalism to the room that could only benefit those around him, however long he is around in his second stint with the team. That should benefit young receivers such as Brandon Tate and Julian Edelman.