Patriots’ Former Rival, 5-Time Pro Bowler Named Top WR Option

Bill Belichick

Getty Bill Belichick could pursue Jarvis Landry in free agency.

The New England Patriots still need more experienced depth at wide receiver amid the free agency miss with DeAndre Hopkins.

Bleacher Report’s Doric Sam proposed free agent wide receiver Jarvis Landry as one of the best free agent options for the Patriots. Landry isn’t Hopkins, but the five-time Pro Bowler and former Miami Dolphins star still has something left.

Sam wrote that Landry “would bring a strong level of experience” to a team such as the Patriots. Despite a “lackluster” 2022 season with the New Orleans Saints as Sam put it, Landry still averaged more than 10 yards per reception amid 25 catches for 272 yards and a touchdown in nine games.

New Orleans had a weaker offense, 19.4 points per game, than the Patriots’ 21.4 points per game. Landry had a stronger 2021 season before his arrival in New Orleans when he posted 52 catches for 570 yards and two touchdowns in 12 games for the Cleveland Browns.

New England could sign Landry at minimal cost. He only made $3 million with the Saints last year, and he has remained unsigned deep into July. Cleveland cut him the year before due to his massive contract at the time — a five-year, $75.5 million deal.

New England Could Receive a Boost From Jarvis Landry

If the Patriots can receive 2021-like production from Landry this season, he would already improve upon every remaining receiver from the 2022 Patriots roster. None of the returning receivers eclipsed the combination of 50-plus receptions for 500-plus yards and two or more touchdowns.

Only Jakobi Meyers surpassed those numbers, and he left in free agency for the Las Vegas Raiders. The Patriots replaced him with free agent JuJu Smith-Schuster, who caught 78 passes for 933 yards and three touchdowns with the Kansas City Chiefs last year.

New England hopes to find improved production from DeVante Parker, Kendrick Bourne, and Tyquan Thornton — all of whom had 35 or fewer catches in 2022. Otherwise, the Patriots have Ty Montgomery moving over to receiver, but he hasn’t caught more than 30 passes in a season since 2016.

Besides the veterans, the Patriots have a bunch of rookies or inexperienced players vying to catches. That crew includes Kayshon Boutte, Demario Douglas, Ed Lee, Malik Cunningham, Raleigh Webb, and Tre Nixon.

Jarvis Landry Once a Frequent Rival Before Browns Trade

A Louisiana native, Landry starred at LSU before the Dolphins took him in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Landry thrived in Miami amid two 1,000-yard seasons and three Pro Bowl appearances between 2014 and 2017.

Things didn’t last in Miami as Landry turned down the franchise tag in 2018, and the Dolphins traded him to the Browns. Landry eclipsed 70 catches and 800 yards in each of his first three seasons.

Injury History a Concern for Jarvis Landry

Hip injuries and a chest rib fracture crept up as an issue for Landry in 2020, and injuries got worse in 2021. He missed four games due to a knee MCL sprain followed by a knee strain that year.

Landry’s issues continued in 2022 with a pedal ankle sprain. The Saints ultimately put Landry on injured reserve after nine games.

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