Kendrick Bourne says Patriots are ‘going to turn it around in one year’

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Henry McKenna
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New England Patriots receiver Kendrick Bourne is feeling optimistic about his new team. Though New England experienced an uncharacteristic regression to 7-9 in 2020, Bourne thinks it was just a blip on Bill Belichick’s impressive career.

“They’re going to turn it around in one year. I can honestly see it,” Bourne told reporters on Monday.

Bourne was a part of an enormous free agency class, not just when measured in volume of players but also in dollars spent. New England paid big money for top-tier free agents Jonnu Smith, Hunter Henry, Matthew Judon, Davon Godchuax and Nelson Agholor. And then the Patriots chipped away at other players they really liked, with Bourne signing a three-year, $22.5 million deal. The free agency class is one reason for optimism in New England.

“They’re going to win again. That was just a one-year thing, I feel like. So I knew I wanted to be a part of the new era, whatever you want to call it,” Bourne said. “Just to be picked with a great group of guys by a great organization, it just shows me my potential.”

The Patriots’ offseason priority was surely to find their starting quarterback. New England re-signed Cam Newton to a backup-caliber contract worth up to $14 million (but guaranteeing only $3.5 million). He’s the favorite to start, with his competition being Jarrett Stidham and Jake Dolega. But New England could always add a free agent — or it could draft a quarterback.

“I really didn’t think about the quarterback situation,” Bourne said when asked what drew him to the Patriots. “It’s more the organization, who they are. I know they’re thinking about their future also.

“But I believe in Cam Newton at the end of the day. I didn’t go looking around, who’s the starting quarterback here. The NFL is the NFL. I believe everybody’s good. It just takes that right place, right time, right coaching and stuff like that.”