Stephon Gilmore to jump to Pats, who will also re-sign Alan Branch
Defensive tackle Alan Branch, meanwhile, has agreed to return to the Patriots on a two-year deal worth up to $12 million, a source told Schefter.
The news of Branch’s return was first reported by CSN New England.
Gilmore, 26, bounced back from a rocky start last season with the Buffalo Bills to become one of the NFL’s best available free agents this spring.
After the Bills exercised Gilmore’s $11.082 million fifth-year option in May for the 2016 season, the two sides failed to reach a long-term contract agreement before talks ended last summer. Gilmore made his negotiating position clear during training camp, saying he believed he was among the elite cornerbacks in the league.
The Bills chose not to use the franchise tag, as the $14.2 million price tag for cornerbacks was prohibitive.
The planned signing of Gilmore indicates that free-agent cornerback Logan Ryan will not return to New England.
The future of Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler, a restricted free agent, is also uncertain.
“The Patriots haven’t…