Free Agency: OL Passes Up Patriots Job

New England has been talking to a number of free agents attempting to lure them with the mystique of Foxboro and it's winning ways. Yet for some reason, they continue to move on for better opportunities -- or paydays -- elsewhere. Here's the scoop on the latest recent visitor to pass on the job in NE for a better situation elsewhere.

RoyPhilpott covers the Dallas Cowboys for You can read more of Roy's work on the Ranch Report website.

Looking for additional help on the offensive line, the Dallas Cowboys signed Jason Fabini to a three-year deal Friday.

Fabini is the second offensive lineman signed by Dallas since the start of free agency seven days ago. The Cowboys also signed Detroit guard Kyle Kosier to a five-year deal.

Fabini's three-year contract is worth $6 million, with the possibility of moving up to $7.5 million. He is expected to come in and immediately take over the starting right tackle position.

Fabini, who was cut earlier this year by the Jets, was also drawing heavy interest from the Patriots and Bucs.

The 6-7, 304-pound product of the University of Cincinnati, just completed his eighth season in New York. Orginally a fourth-round draft selection by the Jets in 1998, Fabini started every game he had played in at the pro level (114 regular season games) before going down with a season-ending chest injury last year.

After beginning his career as a right tackle (1998-1999), he moved to the starting left tackle spot during the team's 2000 training camp and manned the position through the first quarter of the 2005 season before returning to right tackle following a sprained knee injury in game three vs. Jacksonville.

In 1998 Fabini earned the distinction of becoming the first Jets' rookie offensive lineman to play and start in all 16 games since left tackle Chris Ward in 1978, and he also became the first rookie right tackle to start in all 16 games since Marvin Powell accomplished the feat in 1977. Fabini also started all seven postseason games he played in as a member of the Jets during his eight seasons in New York.

Once viewed as a "project," Fabini parlayed excellent work ethic and mental toughness into becoming one of the most consistent tackles in the league.

In fact, Parcells often compared last year's rookie tackle, Rob Petitti, to the standard Fabini set during his time as head coach of the Jets.

Fabini was one of a number of free agents to visit Foxboro. Kevin Mawae also made the trek to New England , only to pass on the opportunity. Mawae signed a deal with Tennessee this week. Meanwhile the Patriots continue to scout pro days, with Bill Belichick in Florida this week to take in some in person.

Related: Fabini Profile || Top Ranked FA OLs || Free Agency Tracker || Latest Free Agency Articles


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