Updated Patriots wide receiver depth chart after Jakobi Meyers joins Raiders
Updated Patriots WR depth chart after Jakobi Meyers joins Raiders originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The New England Patriots entered the 2023 NFL offseason with a lack of top-tier talent and depth at wide receiver, and those problems worsened Tuesday when reports surfaced that Jakobi Meyers had agreed to a three-year, $33 million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders in free agency.
Meyers led Patriots wideouts with 67 receptions, 804 yards and six touchdowns in 2022. He was starting quarterback Mac Jones' most reliable target in the passing attack, evidenced by Meyers' team-leading 22 catches and 330 yards on third downs.
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Meyers' departure leaves DeVante Parker and Kendrick Bourne as the Patriots' top wide receivers. Bourne played a limited role last year and Parker was a disappointment. Parker also missed four games due to injury, and he's missed a total of 13 games over the last three seasons. Tyquan Thornton showed some positive signs as a rookie, but he still has a long way to go before becoming an important part of this offense.
After those three guys, the talent level on the Patriots' wide receiver depth chart pretty much falls off a cliff.
The Patriots need to make a major upgrade at wide receiver before training camp because the current group won't get this franchise back to the playoffs.
Maybe the Patriots can find that player in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft. New England owns the No. 14 overall pick, and a couple of the best wideouts in the class -- including USC's Jordan Addison, TCU's Quentin Johnston or Ohio State's Jaxon Smith-Njigba -- could be on the board at that time. They could also trade down to land a wide receiver like Boston College's Zay Flowers, as our Phil Perry predicted in his latest NFL Mock Draft.
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The trade market is a place the Patriots could look for help, too. Arizona Cardinals star DeAndre Hopkins' name has been the subject of many trade rumors in recent months. Maybe the Raiders will look to move Hunter Renfrow after adding Meyers.
The bottom line is the Patriots must add at least one veteran wideout who can make an impact next season. They are in a tough division and must play against some excellent cornerbacks on the Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins and New York Jets.
Here's an updated wide receiver depth chart for the Patriots following Meyers' departure, along with each player's 2022 stats.
Devante Parker: 31 receptions, 539 yards, 3 TD in 13 games
Kendrick Bourne: 35 receptions, 434 yards, 1 TD in 16 games
Tyquan Thornton: 22 receptions, 247 yards, 2 TD in 13 games
Lynn Bowden: Zero receptions in one game (14 offensive snaps)
Tre Nixon: Zero games played
Raleigh Webb: One offensive snap in 10 games