It’s another setback for the once promising wideout, who has been dealt a very tough hand in recent years. Meredith had been on the PUP list to start the season, and Yates notes that he was still unable to fully recover from his knee injury. There was an initial thought in the building that “2019 would be a year to get healthy with an eye toward 2020,” tweets Mike Reiss of ESPN.com, who notes that obviously “those plans have now changed.”
Meredith originally signed a two-year deal back in early August shortly after the Saints cut him. He initially signed with the Bears as an undrafted free agent out of Illinois State back in 2015. The small-school product burst onto the scene in 2016 as he racked up 888 yards and four touchdowns. He looked like a potential star in the making and was set to enter 2017 as Chicago’s top receiver, until he tore his ACL and suffered other damage in his knee during the preseason.
He missed the entire season, but had still shown enough the year before to earn a two-year, $9.6MM offer sheet from the Saints. His knee continued to bother him during his time in New Orleans and he never got back to full strength, appearing in just six games and making only nine catches last year. After he again struggled with his knee this offseason, New Orleans cut bait. At this point, it’s fair to wonder if he’ll ever get back to his prior level.
After the Patriots released Antonio Brown, there was some hope that Meredith could come off PUP and provide their receiving corp with some reinforcements. They’ll now have to look elsewhere, and the return of rookie first-round pick N’Keal Harry, on injured reserve with an ankle injury, just got a lot more important.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.