I am not too worried about the losses so far. FAs on elite teams get paid big money - it happens every year. What really matters is having a half-way healthy team going into the playoffs. I think the receivers did a decent job picking up the slack for Edelman, but our defense fell completely apart without Hightower.
I will be interested to see who the Pats bring in to fill the voids. They are obviously losing some decent players - maybe now they will have enough to give Gronk a heft raise.
I'm not bummed about losing Butler, because IMO he went downhill a lot this season (though he still should've played over Jordan Richards in the SB).
But I AM bummed about losing Lewis, because he brings so much versatility. And even though I realize it's a business and guys are gonna do what's in their best interests, including financial interests, it does irk me a bit when a player leaves the team that basically gave him his chance in the league—in Lewis's case, his career was going nowhere after getting little playing time in Philly, but NE came along and helped him become one of the best pass-catching RBs in the game.
Anywho, I'm bummed he's gone, and also that Amendola left. The Pats definitely have some work to do, and not only on defense.