he New England Patriots gave quarterback Mac Jones some much-needed help as he enters his second season in the NFL.
New England traded a 2023 third-round pick to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for DeVante Parker and a 2022 fifth-round pick.
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Parker is just two years removed from a 2019 campaign that saw him rack up 1,202 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. In 2021, the 29-year-old only tallied 40 receptions for 515 yards and two touchdowns while missing seven games.
Joining the Patriots offense in 2022 offers Parker a fresh start with a superior quarterback. It’s a chance for him to revitalize his career like many other players have done in the past.
According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport, Parker made it “very clear” to the Dolphins that he wanted to come to New England.
The Feeling is Mutual
While Parker wanted to come to New England, head coach Bill Belichick has enjoyed Parker’s play for a while. It was a perfect storm for a move to be made by the two AFC East teams.
“From my understanding, (Parker) is someone that Coach Bill Belichick has liked for a long time, has always respected his skill set and really someone that he considers to be a solid addition to his receiving corps,” Rapoport said on NFL Network. “And then it went the other way, too. DeVante Parker wanted to be a member of the New England Patriots.
Belichick heaped praise on Parker ahead of New England’s matchup against the Dolphins in Week 1 of the 2020 season.
“He’s a big athlete that runs well, has good hands good, has run after the catch ability and good quickness for his size,” Belichick stated. “So he presents a lot of problems on deep balls as a big target, on intermediate routes in cuts and crossing routes things like that. He’s strong and can break tackles as a catch-and-run player so he attacks all three levels of the defense and can be productive at all three spots.”
The acquisition provided some much needed depth to New England’s passing game. Parker is the deep threat that the Patriots and Mac Jones have been looking for. The 29-year-old stands at 6’2″ and is able to use his athleticism to make some amazing catches. With Jones, 23, entering his second NFL season, the Patriots needed to acquire a player of Parker’s caliber and skillset.
All-Out Aerial Attack
Jones will have plenty of targets with the addition of Parker. Alongside the new No. 1 receiver will be Jakobi Meyers and Kendrick Bourne. The wide receivers are coming off of a 2021 season that saw the duo combine for 138 receptions for 1,666 receiving yards and seven touchdowns.
Also the Patriots QB will have Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith who are quality pass-catching tight ends. Both are in their second seasons in New England and should show improvement after taking some time to adjust to the Patriots offense.
Finally James White re-signed with the franchise who will be yet another pass-catching tool for New England. While missing the majority of the 2021 season due to injury, White has tallied over 375 receptions in 95 career games.
So with a motivated Parker getting what he wanted in coming to New England, Patriots fans will see Jones and the 29-year-old connecting on plenty of long balls, and scoring plenty of touchdowns.