Perennial pro-bowl guard Logan Mankins seems resigned to be playing elsewhere next season after a season in which he spent almost as many games holding out as he did helping to seal the pocket for QB Tom Brady.

Logan Mankins' unhappiness seems to be born from the new-age "I don't have to stick to the contract I signed" feeling that seems to have permeated the league in the last ten years or so.  Who knew free agency meant one didn't have to stick to their word-and signature-anymore when it came around?

Mankins was recently quoted by the Boston Herald saying "I would never say the door is totally shut.  But the way it's looking right now, I don't see it happening.  I don't see them trying to keep me, unless it's with the franchise tag."

He went on to say (regarding the franchise tag) "No, I wouldn't be happy about that, if that's what they chose to do, to be dealt that kind of hand.  But we'll see what happens."

I love it.  "To be dealt that kind of hand".  Seriously?  The Pats stuck to their end of the contract you signed as an untested, unproven rookie.  They brought you in, signed you to a multi-year deal, and helped make you the star you've become, and yet by expecting you to stick to that deal you act offended.  Then, to say they might franchise you-a move that would force the team to pay him the average of the 3 highest paid players at his position, or just over 10 million if this had been this past season (although the franchise numbers haven't been released for next season yet).  That number typically rises from year to year.

Unfortunately I don't see a real replacement for Mankins available on the market, and while there are a few big linemen available in the draft, it's hard to imagine any would be as productive as Mankins has been.  Since the off-season began, well since the season began Mankins has seemed to be a must-re-sign type of player, but as time moves on it looks like that may not happen.