Newton’s leadership is already in full effect. In addition to participating in multiple offseason throwing sessions with new tight ends and wide receivers and attending voluntary workouts, the 2015 NFL MVP was spotted hanging out with several new teammates in New York City.
New Patriots wide receiver Kendrick Bourne, tight end Jonnu Smith, offensive lineman Trent Brown, and last year’s teammate Jakobi Meyers all posed for pictures during what looked like a fun weekend. Brown posted this image on Instagram with the caption, “in sync like we been here before.”
Bourne posted an image of himself, Brown and Newton walking down the NYC streets. His caption said: “knowing each other off the field makes this game a lot easier!”
Talent, scheme, and coaching matter a ton, but it isn’t easy to quantify the importance of chemistry. Tom Brady organized multiple throwing sessions with his new teammates in Tampa Bay, and while he didn’t pioneer the concept, we saw how well it turned out for him and the Buccaneers last season.
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The Patriots and their new band of weapons are hoping to see similar results with Newton and Co.
The Other Potentially Impactful Addition on Offense
Nelson Agholor and Hunter Henry weren’t in New York, or at least, they weren’t in any of the posted pictures. However, both men figure to play a massive role in what most expect will be a vastly improved Patriots passing game.
Henry and Smith could team up to form the tight end version of Voltron for the Patriots. The pair may give the Patriots the best 1-2 punch at the position throughout the league.
Agholor was a playmaker for the Las Vegas Raiders in 2020. While he’s not a burner, Agholor has proven adept at getting open behind the defense for chunk plays. According to Pro Football Focus, only Tyreek Hill and AJ Brown had more receiving yards on TD catches.
Most receiving yards on TD receptions:
🚀Tyreek Hill – 391
🚀AJ Brown – 293
🚀Nelson Agholor – 277
🚀Will Fuller – 267 pic.twitter.com/lATCXuaGr1
— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) February 18, 2021
More on the Way on Draft Day
While the tight ends, Agholor and Bourne will create more options for Newton, New England could take their offense from good to great if they can find a receiver who qualifies as a proper No. 1 option.
Fortunately, the 2021 NFL Draft is a good one for the wide receiver position. The Patriots could stay pat at No. 15 and find a game-changer, or perhaps move up a couple of spots to get a player like DeVonta Smith or Jaylen Waddle.
With Julian Edelman retired, Bourne believes there will be an opportunity for someone to step up. Perhaps the breakout performance will come from a rookie and the newly signed veterans.
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