New England Patriots

By Matt Dolloff,

The New England Patriots are reportedly closing in on a two-year contract extension for fullback James Develin, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic on Twitter. Howe added that the deal should be finalized on Thursday.

Develin previously signed a two-year extension worth up to $2.45 million ($1.225 million AAV) with the Patriots prior to the 2017 season. He’s set to earn up to $1,325,000 in 2018, which includes an extra $100,000 roster bonus tacked on after he remained on the roster on March 16.

Terms of the deal have yet to be disclosed as of the time of this writing, but Develin is likely to earn a bump up from his $800,000 base salary in the past two seasons.

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) hands the ball off to New England Patriots running back James Develin (46) during a practice drill at Gillette stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Besides missing the entire 2015 season with a broken tibia suffered in the preseason, Develin has been active for all 16 games in four of the past five campaigns. He’s credited with 21 starts in those 64 games.

Develin has been one of the most prolific and effective fullbacks in the NFL in recent years. He’s mainly used as a blocker in various situations, but also catches the occasional pass from Tom Brady. And as CBS Boston’s Michael Hurley points out below, Develin made a nice block against the Jacksonville Jaguars that helped spring Dion Lewis for the game-clinching run.[/emed]

Ultimately, Develin’s value comes as a lead blocker and he continues to carve out a nice career for himself at the NFL level doing just that.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at

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— Salary information via Spotrac