After a week on the open market, Jamie Collins appears to be heading toward a Patriots reunion. New England is working on a deal that would bring Collins back for his third stint with the organization, according to ESPN’s Field Yates.
Collins was released by the Lions last week after the team was unable to find a trade partner. A nine-year veteran, Collins spent his first three-plus seasons in New England, where he helped the Patriots win their fourth Super Bowl under head coach Bill Belichick. Collins earned his lone Pro Bowl selection in 2015 after recording a league-high five forced fumbles.
Despite his success in New England, Collins was traded to Cleveland during the 2016 season. He remained in Cleveland through the 2018 season before signing a one-year deal with the Patriots during the 2019 offseason. That season, Collins racked up 81 tackles, seven sacks, three interceptions and three forced fumbles while helping New England boast the league’s top-ranked scoring defense.
Collins’ success in 2019 led to him signing a three-year, $30 million contract with the Lions, where he was reunited with former Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, who was fired 11 games into the season. Collins tallied 101 tackles, three forced fumbles and one interception during his only full season with Detroit. He had 10 tackles in his two games with the Lions in 2021.
Given his familiarity with Belichick’s system, Collins should be able to make an immediate contribution to the Patriots’ defense. The unit is currently sixth in the NFL in scoring, fourth in passing and eighth in third-down efficiency.