The New England Patriots have a new rival for the services of Pro Bowl cornerback Aqib Talib if he’s released by the Denver Broncos. According to Vinnie Iyer of Sporting News, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could also pursue the 32-year-old Talib, who played for both the Buccaneers and the Patriots in his career. The Broncos are willing to keep Talib, but he has to restructure his contract. Talib is scheduled to earn a base salary of $11 million and $8 million in 2019 before he turns free agent in 2020.

Buccaneers recruiting Talib

Earlier, Buccaneers defensive lineman Gerald McCoy recruited Talib at the Pro Bowl in January.

McCoy and Talib played together from 2010 to 2012 while the cornerback spent part of the 2012 season and whole of 2013 seasons with the Patriots. During his 19-game stint with the Patriots, Talib tallied five interceptions. In his career, Talib has 34 interceptions. The Patriots are eyeing a cornerback as they expect to lose Malcolm Butler to free agency in the next few weeks. It was also reported that the Patriots are eyeing a trade for Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman.

The Buccaneers picked Talib in the first round of the 2008 NFL Draft. After five seasons in Tampa Bay, Talib played for the Patriots before joining the Broncos in 2014. In Denver, Talib has 152 tackles and 11 interceptions.

Redskins corner a perfect fit for Patriots

According to senior analyst Gil Brandt, the Patriots could turn to another cornerback in case Butler leaves for free agency. Brandt said Washington Redskins cornerback Bashaud Breeland could be an ideal compliment opposite of Stephon Gilmore in New England's secondary. Brandt said Breeland has proven that he can cover the opposition’s best receiver in his four years with the Redskins.

A fourth-round pick by the Redskins in the 2014 NFL Draft, Breeland became a permanent fixture in Washington’s line, starting 57 of 60 games. During that span, he tallied 250 tackles, 59 passes defended and eight interceptions. Based on’s projection, Breeland's market value in the free-agent market is assumed to be a five-year deal worth just under $35 million.

Currently, the Patriots have Gilmore and Eric Rowe as possible starting cornerbacks and Jonathan Jones, Cyrus Jones, Ryan Lewis and Jomal Wiltz as backups. The Patriots are also expected to draft a cornerback in the 2018 NFL Draft, possibly M.J. Stewart (North Carolina), Isaiah Oliver (Colorado), and Mike Hughes (Central Florida).