Brandon Spikes hasn’t been around the Patriots facility much

According to Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com, Patriots middle linebacker Brandon Spikes hasn’t been around the team facility that much this offseason workout program started.  He’s heading into a big year, since this is the final year of his rookie contract.

When media members are present for the Patriots’ organized team activity on Tuesday, one of the first areas of interest will be starting middle linebacker Brandon Spikes’presence. Spikes, who joined the team as a 2010 second-round draft choice, enters the final season of his contract so this is a big year for him to improve his stock and land what he hopes is a big payday. Given that background, it’s notable from this perspective that Spikes hasn’t been seen much at Gillette Stadium since the offseason program began in mid-April. Staying away is within Spikes’ rights, and there have been productive players in past years (e.g. Mike Vrabel) who have taken the same approach at times. So one of the first things I’ll be looking at Tuesday is if Spikes is present, and if he is, if there is any noticeable difference in his physical condition and how he is being employed.

Spikes has done a great job of fitting into the Patriots’ defense.  It will be interesting to see how he performs during a contract year and how much the Pats will be willing to pay him.