Although the Patriots completed a decent bounce-back effort last season, they did not equip Mac Jones with much help at the wide receiver position. New England might address that need with a veteran.
The Pats contacted the Panthers on Robby Anderson, per The Athletic’s Joe Person and Jeff Howe (Twitter link). No deal is imminent, Person tweets, but after Anderson regressed last year, the team is “more than willing” to listen. The Panthers gave Anderson a two-year, $29.5MM extension before last season.
While Carolina’s quarterback situation was not exactly conducive to wideout production, D.J. Moore still surpassed 1,100 yards. Anderson slid from 1,096 with Teddy Bridgewater in 2020 to a career-worst 519 during the Panthers’ chaotic QB season. The Patriots are certainly familiar with Anderson’s work, from his four Jets seasons. Anderson, who will turn 29 in May, is due $10MM and $8.8MM base salaries over the next two years.
No Pats receiver topped 900 yards last season, and ex-UDFA Jakobi Meyers has led the team in receiving in each of the two post-Tom Brady years. Meyers can be kept in 2022 via RFA tender, while the Pats have 2021 additions Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne under contract. Bourne is signed through 2023, with Agholor’s deal up after the ’22 slate. Agholor finished with just 473 yards last season — fourth-most on the team — despite signing a two-year, $26MM accord. His cap number is set to spike from $6.9MM last year to $14.9MM in 2022. N’Keal Harry remains a Patriot, but the former first-rounder has never factored in prominently in this offense.
New England has not been shy about trading for wideouts in recent years. Brandin Cooks, Mohamed Sanu, Josh Gordon and Phillip Dorsett came to Foxborough via trade since 2017. It will be interesting to see if other names pop up beyond Anderson for the wideout-needy team.