Following an awkward end to his 2017 season, which saw him inactive for Super Bowl LII, Alan Branch's future with the New England Patriots appears to be over

According to NESN's Doug Keyed, the Pats declined Branch's 2018 option, which would have kept the 33-year-old in New England next season.

Branch is now officially a free agent and the Pats have cleared $3 million off their payroll, as they look to make moves this offseason.

The two sides could theoretically link up on a new deal to bring Branch back to town, though that looks unlikely. The team and Branch seemed to be drifting apart last season and he ultimately didn't play in some of their biggest games.