At the end of 2017, the New England Patriots said goodbye to two wide receivers in Brandin Cooks who they traded to the Los Angeles Rams and Danny Amendola, annual postseason star who they let walk in free agency to the Mami Dolphins. However, do the Patriots have a wide receiver problem?
Not only did the Patriots lose two wide receivers this offseason but they also will take the field without Julian Edelman who is facing a 4-game for violating the NFL’s policy on performance enhancing drugs. This makes the best wide receiver on the team Chris Hogan and after that the depth chart just gets worse and worse.
Listed next on the depth chart is former Minnesota Viking and Oakland Raider, Cordarrelle Patterson who has value as a return specialist and had a very productive preseason.
Next up is former Indianapolis Colts first round pick, Phillip Dorsett, who has been a disappointment at this point in his career. Dorsett had 12 receptions and 194 yards for the Patriots last season and will look for an increase in production in Edelman’s absence.
The Patriots picked up two wide receivers this past weekend and after Amara Darboh was recently waived, Chad Hansen sits alone at the bottom of the depth chart. Hansen, 23, saw little work with division rival New York Jets but will likely also get some time on the field while Edelman is facing his suspension.
The main problem with the Patriots wide receiver situation is that they have four wide receivers without Edelman. Most teams carry five or six and the Patriots have four on the team with Hogan, Patterson, Dorsett and Hansen. Once Edelman comes back, he will be the top receiver with Hogan as the clear number two and that makes the situation slightly better but it’s not a good situation to be in.
However, this may turn out to not be a problem when Tom Brady is under center and can make do with any unit around him. Another thing that can remedy this wide receiver doomsday situation is premier pass catching running back James White, along with Rex Burkhead, and potential rookie featured back Sony Michel once he returns from injury.
The offense for the Patriots is always questioned before the season to some extent but there’s never been a unit with so many question marks heading into the season as this one. Perhaps there may be a more balanced attack with the Patriots this year as opposed to just a dominant offense.