The New England Patriots stunned everybody on Tuesday with the trade of 1,000-yard receiver Brandin Cooks. This leaves the Patriots with currently nine players listed at the wide receiver position. The Patriots wide receiver depth chart has shifted a little with the departure of Brandin Cooks, and will be reset heading into 2018.
Brandin Cooks is headed to Los Angeles! https://t.co/dJrXjtGLxX
— LWOS Patriots (@LWOS_Patriots) April 3, 2018
A Reset of the Patriots Wide Receivers
The Current Depth Chart
Julian Edelman: Julian Edelman missed the entire 2017 season after he suffered a knee injury during the preseason. He will be a major part of the offense at the age of 32. As a result of the departure of Cooks and Danny Amendola, Edelman will be relied on heavily to help carry the load with the passing game. Edelman’s return will certainly bring with it a series of highlight reel plays.
Chris Hogan: Like most of the offense, Chris Hogan struggled with injuries during the 2017 season. When Hogan was healthy he was one of the more productive receivers in the league. If Hogan stays healthy, expect him to have similar production to his 2016 season. Hogan will be a threat in the short and deep passing game in 2018.
Phillip Dorsett: Due to getting traded for Jacoby Brissett, Phillip Dorsett had to learn on the fly in 2017. Dorsett is similar to Cooks in size and is also speedy like Cooks. After an entire season in the system, Dorsett will see his usage and productivity increase in 2018.
Malcolm Mitchell: Like Edelman, Malcolm Mitchell missed the entire 2017 season due to injury. Micthell had a nice rookie season in 2016, finishing with a strong performance in Super Bowl LI. Mitchell is one of the Patriots bigger targets and will mostly lineup on the outside as a target for Tom Brady.
Kenny Britt: Another big target is Kenny Britt. Britt joined the Patriots after the season had started in 2017. He is the biggest receiver on the Patriots depth chart. Britt played the majority of the season in Cleveland and did not see much playing time. Kenny Britt will benefit from an entire season in the system and is on track for a solid 2018.
Patriots Wide Receivers on Special Teams
Matthew Slater: Matthew Slater is a loved figure in the Boston sports scene. Slater is a yearly fixture on the Pro Bowl roster as the special teams ace. Slater has only one reception in his career with New England. The seven-time Pro Bowler is a leader on the unit and will not see any action on the offense in 2018.
Cordarelle Patterson: Cordarelle Patterson joined the Patriots in March. Last season with the Raiders, Patterson was not as productive as previous seasons. Patterson scored five special teams touchdowns with the Vikings from 2013 until 2016. He is a kick return specialist who has made a career of taking it back for touchdowns. Patterson possesses a rare combination of rare size and speed. Patterson will only be on the offense in packages that can take advantage of defenses on deep routes.
The Outside Looking In
Riley McCarron and Cody Hollister: McCarron and Hollister spent 2017 on the Patriots practice squad. They both won the award of practice squad player of the week. Due to not having any experience, both players need to do a lot of work to find their way on the roster in 2018.
The Patriots wide receiver depth chart still looks loaded after the departure of Brandin Cooks. New England has nine players on the team at the wide receiver position. Most notably, the receivers are once again healthy. Therefore, the offense will be strong again in 2018. Brandin Cooks departure is a blow to the deep passing game, but the Patriots possess a great offense without him.
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