New England Patriots: Tom Brady has one of the top 5 WR trios in the NFL

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 11: Wide receiver Danny Amendola
GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 11: Wide receiver Danny Amendola /

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will enter the season with one of the top 5 receiver trios in the NFL.

This according to FanRag sports Jon Leyard.  The New England Patriots trio of Julian Edelman, Brandin Cooks and second-year man Malcolm Mitchell came in fifth amongst receiving trios in the NFL.

While the list could be argued, it is to no surprise that the addition of Cooks would excel the Patriots groups of trios as one of the best.  The former New Orleans Saints deep man brings that quality to a very diverse skill specialized receiving group.

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In Julian Edelman, you have one of the best slot receivers in the NFL.  Malcolm Mitchell gives the team a possession receiver who is expected to have a breakout second season.  In Cooks, the Patriots finally have a receiver who can take the top off the defense.  That group doesn’t even include Chris Hogan or Danny Amendola.

Why just No. 5?

Because of their specialized skill sets and versatility, I would personally have ranked them higher.  It is because of those same specialized skill sets that influenced the No. 5 ranking.

According to Leyard:

"“I hesitate to put the Patriots’ trio on the list, because I think all three have specialized skill sets (to varying degrees) that wouldn’t necessarily dominate in every offense. But Bill Belichick has valued quick, shifty route runners with elite separation skills for a long time, and it is tough to knock the Pats’ trio for excelling in that regard even if their overall games aren’t as well-rounded as others not on this list.”"

Leyard went on to acknowledge that the trio presents a balance on the field that excels their playmaking ability.  However, the fact that none of them is a true No. 1 wide receiver affected where they were placed in the rankings.

HOUSTON, TX – FEBRUARY 05: Julian Edelman
HOUSTON, TX – FEBRUARY 05: Julian Edelman /

Coming in ahead of the New England Patriots trio is Tampa Bay Buccaneers recivers Mike Evans, Desean Jackosn, Adam Humphries/Chris Godwin at No. 4.  The Green Bay Packers trio of Jordy Nelson, Davante Adams and Randall Cobb at No. 3.  New York Giants wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard and Brandon Marshall at No. 2 and the Pittsburgh Steelers group of Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, Eli Rogers/JuJu Smith-Schuster at No. 1.

It is hard to argue any on that list, but with a quarterback like Tom Brady throwing the ball, the Patriots receiving group may rank higher statistically once the season is over and done with.

What could hurt them, however, is the health of Rob Gronkowski and the array of receiving running backs the team has.

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Unlike the other teams mentioned on the list and those that didn’t make the list like the Denver Broncos, the Patriots offense projects to have an explosive attack – one not just reliant on the wide receiver position.