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The New England Patriots are trimming out the roster as the franchise embarks through a seismic offseason. On Monday, the club released two defensive players in starting lineman Lawrence Guy and safety Adrian Phillips, according to NFL Media. 

Both players were heading into the final year of their contracts and the move helped New England create a notable amount of cap space to further retool the roster after a 4-13 season in 2023. The club had the fourth-most cap space in the NFL before those moves and now has carved out roughly $6.4 million more to spend this offseason. 

At one point, each was a key contributor for the defense under Bill Belichick, who parted ways with the franchise after this season. Guy arrived in Foxborough in 2017 after inking a four-year, $20 million deal with the Patriots in free agency. He helped the team win Super Bowl LIII in 2019 and re-upped with New England back in 2021, signing a four-year, $11.5 million extension. The 33-year-old played in all 17 games for the Patriots last season and totaled 38 tackles. 

As for Phillips, this release snaps a four-season stint with the Patriots after signing a two-year, $6 million contract as a free agent in 2020. While he was a key figure to start his time with the team, his role started to diminish over the last three seasons. After playing 82% of the snaps in 2021, Phillips played in just 12% of the defensive snaps last season, despite being active for all 17 contests. Instead, he saw an uptick in special teams snaps (70%). 

When given the opportunity, Phillips did play at a high level. From 2020-2021, He started in 29 of his 33 games played and averaged three interceptions per season. With his decreased time on the field in 2023, he totaled 17 tackles.