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Next item of business: RFA tenders

3/11/2010

The next item of business for the Patriots will be to place tenders on their restricted free agents -- Logan Mankins, Stephen Gostkowski and Pierre Woods. The deadline to do so is Thursday.

The offers can be at one of four levels. The higher the level, the higher the compensation another team would have to award the Patriots for signing the player away (if the Patriots decided not to match the offer). The levels are broken down this way:

1) Original draft slot

2) Second-round draft choice

3) First-round draft choice

4) First-and-third-round draft choice

In February, I had attempted to forecast what the offers might be for Mankins, Gostkowski and Woods -- with Mankins at the first- and third-round level, Gostkowski the first-round level, and Woods at the second-round level.

In retrospect, I might have been a little rich on Gostkowski. Tendering him at the second-round level ($1.7 million) seems like the more likely course of action. It would be surprising if another team signed him to an offer sheet when the compensation would be a second-round pick.

Mankins is the team's best offensive lineman and my feeling is to eliminate any risk of possibly losing him.

On Woods, the danger of tendering him lower than a second-round pick is that he would essentially become an unrestricted free agent because he entered the league as a rookie free agent.