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Patriots host Chris Hogan, Bills restricted free agent

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The New England Patriots appear ready to steal a wide receiver from the Buffalo Bills.

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Something here seems familiar. The New England Patriots hosted a restricted free agent wide receiver who started his career as an undrafted free agent and first came onto the radar as a member of the Miami Dolphins. The Patriots appear set to sign the receiver to an offer sheet with a contract that cannot be easily matched. While this would appear to be a re-telling of the Patriots courtship of Wes Welker in 2007, it is actually happening to another receiver this year. And, it is not a receiver currently on the Dolphins roster.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter and NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, the Patriots met with Buffalo Bills restricted free agent wide receiver Chris Hogan on Thursday and are preparing an offer sheet.

Dolphins fans know Hogan from his appearances on HBO's Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Miami Dolphins in 2012. During the show, running back Reggie Bush nicknamed Hogan "7-Eleven," explaining that Hogan was always open.

Hogan began his career with the San Francisco 49ers in 2011 as an undrafted free agent in 2011, but was released as the season started. He then had a brief stint on the New York Giants practice squad before sitting out most of the season before the Dolphins added him to their practice squad in December 2011. After the 2012 training camp, Miami signed Hogan to their practice squad, but released him a couple of weeks into the season.

In November, 2012, the Bills signed Hogan to their practice squad before promoting him to the roster just before the end of the season.  In four seasons with Buffalo, Hogan has appeared in 48 games, with 6 starts, recording 87 receptions for 959 yards with 6 touchdowns. He caught 36 passes for 450 yards and 2 touchdowns last year, as well as becoming a key member of the Buffalo special teams unit.

According to Buffalo Rumblings, the Bills placed the lowest restricted free agent tender on Hogan this offseason, meaning the Patriots would not have to compensate the Bills with a draft pick if they were to sign him. The Bills would have five days to choose to match the offer on Hogan, but the Bills are extremely tight against the salary cap, which would make it difficult for them to choose to retain Hogan.