The Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots are off for the month of July but the hometown crowd is aching for the 2017 New Patriot squad to take the field. Here is your guide for what to look forward to this season.
The Receiving Corps
In case Patriots fans have been living under a rock, you have No. 1 receivers at the top of the depth chart.
The Brandin Cooks hype is indeed real Pats fans as he has been as good as advertised catching everything thrown his way. If you want to get more excited for Cooks and Julian Edelman on the field together, take a look at their statistics together from last season.
- Edelman: 98 – fourth in NFL
- Cooks: 78 – tied for 24th in NFL
- Cooks: 1,173 – seventh in NFL
- Edelman: 1,106 – 13th in NFL
- Cooks: Eight – tied for ninth in NFL
- Edelman: Three – tied for 84th in NFL
YARDS PER RECEPTION
- Cooks: 15.0 – 14th in NFL
- Edelman: 11.3 – 82nd in NFL
(Statistics courtesy of patspulpit.com)
Edelman and Cooks will complement each other like Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan in a romantic comedy. It will most likely work and you should definitely be excited when #11 and #14 take the field.
A 100 Percent Healthy Rob Gronkowski
As if the Patriots offense couldn’t get anymore dangerous. All-world tight end Rob Gronkowski played through OTA’s and mandatory mini camp with no restrictions and no hiccups in play.
Gronkowski was given an incentive heavy restructured contract based on how long he’s on the field and his performance, making the tight end feel more motivated than ever to help out his football team.
“I’m very grateful for the opportunity that the Patriots organization gave me,” Gronkowski said, “and now I have to keep working hard, do what’s best for the team, do what’s best for myself to help out the team in any way possible.”
The Patriots Secondary
Move over Seattle, New England is home to the best secondary in the National Football League.
Admittedly the Patriots did indeed overpay for the services of former Bills cornerback Stephon Gilmore ($40 million in guaranteed money), but doing so gave New England the best secondary in the NFL no ifs and no buts.
Butler, Gilmore, McCourty, and Chung make up the starters while Eric Rowe will look to improve upon his first season with the ball club. One must not forget about the growth of Jonathan Jones (Not Cyrus Jones) at slot cornerback after seeing more and more snaps on defense, even in the playoffs.
Not only should fans be excited about this new secondary, but how the chemistry between the members of the group has been growing.
Presumed leader of the group Devin McCourty talked about Gilmore and how the group has made progress this Summer.
“I think the beauty of playing in the secondary is that stuff doesn’t matter,” McCourty said Wednesday. “Because at the end of the day, it’s all about how we play as a unit. To me, that has been the cool thing — to see guys talking, guys laughing and joking, Steph fitting into the group like he’s been here for years. To me, that’s the key, and that’s what I have seen so far.”
What do you think Patriots Nation? What part of the team are you looking forward to the most this year?