Two big moves came from the New England Patriots on Tuesday.
Early that morning, the Patriots acquired Atlanta Falcons receiver Mohammed Sanu in exchange for a second-round pick. Sanu fell behind in the depth chart when 2018 first-round pick Calvin Ridley began being used more in the offense. Sanu seems to fit perfectly in this Patriots offense due to his availability (only two games missed since 2013) and his versatility (being able to play outside and in the slot).
Starting at 1:25 in this clip, Sanu shows his versatility which will help the Patiriots. In the next 30 seconds after, Sanu lines up (and catches passes) outside, in the slot, and even a screen. The seven-year veteran continuously fights for extra yards, something head coach Bill Belichick always loves to see.
Sanu can also pass. Now, does that mean the Patriots will run out trick plays every game? No. However, a triple-pass between Sanu, Tom Brady, and Julian Edelman in a game has to intrigue any Patriots fan.
The guy simply drops dimes. Anyone who’s labeled “Trick Play Master” by the NFL should get anyone excited. Sanu actually owns a perfect QBR in his NFL career, going 7/8 for 233 yards and four touchdowns.
The next Patriots acquisition is special teams stud Justin Bethel, who some refer to as the best special teamer in the league. He will line up alongside Matthew Slater to form a dynamic special teams duo that will be considered the best in the league.
The only reason Bethel became available is because of the compensatory fourth-round pick associated with him.
“Justin Bethel, unfortunately, had to be released because of a funky rule that the NFL has with these compensatory picks,’’ Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said in a news conference Monday.
Being on special teams, Bethel isn’t the flashiest name available, but he will make an impact. Here is a clip of Bethel showing his ability to block kicks, as well as possible return capability. If the Patriots are confident they can develop him into a kick returner, it may open them up to release Gunner Olszewski, who seems to be occupying a much-needed roster spot.
Both players seem like perfect fits for the Patriots. Both are versatile and play in areas that coach Belichick loves. The Sanu/Edelman combo will be lethal on offense and the Bethel/Slater combo on special teams will be the best in the league. It all helps the Patriots as they continue to trek towards banner seven in the Brady-Belichick era.