FOXBORO - It appears that the Patriots don't need LeGarrette Blount after all.
New England added former Buffalo running back Mike Gillislee to the roster on Monday when the Bills let it be known at the 4 p.m. deadline that they would not be matching the offer sheet to the fourth-year veteran.
The signing will send one of the Patriots' two fifth-round draft picks to the Bills as compensation, No. 163 overall. It also makes it highly unlikely that the Patriots will go out of their way to offer a contract to Blount, currently a free agent.
This marks the second straight year that the Patriots have plucked a talented player away from Buffalo. Last March, the Patriots signed restricted free agent Chris Hogan away from the Bills with an offer that would have been salary-cap poison in Orchard Park.
According to published reports, Gillislee's contract will be worth $6.4 million over two years, including a $4 million share for this coming season.
The Bills' tender offer for Gillislee was $1.797 million for one year.
Gillislee, originally a 2013 fifth-round selection by the Miami Dolphins out of Florida, was the Bills' No. 2 running back behind LeSean McCoy last year, rushing 101 times for 577 yards and scoring eight touchdowns. His 5.71-yard average per rush led the league among running backs with the qualifying number of rushes, as did his averages for rusheds per touchdown (12.6), first downs per rush (38.6 percent) and third-down conversions (75 percent).
The Patriots also shored up the running back position in the offseason by signing Rex Burkhead from the Cincinnati Bengals and giving Super Bowl LI hero James White a three-year contract extension. However, it also appears they will part ways with Blount after his most productive season as a Patriot.
Blount gained 1,161 yards on 299 carries in the regular season and led the NFL with 18 rushing touchdowns, a team record, and the highest total in the league since Adrian Peterson's 18 in 2009.
The Patriots are now down to just six picks in the draft, which begins Thursday night. They have no picks in the first and second rounds, two in the third round and single picks in the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh rounds.