The biggest question mark surrounding the Patriots right now is their offense. There’s a new top wideout in JuJu Smith-Schuster, but plenty of unknowns behind him on the depth chart. New England has also openly flirted with several big names in free agency, yet no splashes have been made with the preseason right around the corner.
For now, it appears the Pats are opting to add around the edges with value moves. The team leaned into this strategy on Tuesday by by claiming Thyrick Pitts off of waivers from the Bears.
In theory, this is to give Mac Jones some wide receiver help. However, Pitts’ stop in Foxborough might not be for long.
The team revealed on Wednesday that Pitts’ new number is 13 after previously wearing 38 for Chicago. This isn’t just a historically unlucky figure; it’s also the same number that cornerback Jack Jones currently rocks.
Reading the tea leaves here, it doesn’t seem like New England is that confident in Pitts sticking around. After all, they’d be a little more careful choosing a number for a player that figures into the team’s long-future, instead of recycling one worn by one of this squad’s most promising young contributors.
It’s safe to say Pitts has one of the most difficult paths to making the roster, even at a pressing position of need. The wideout spent a whopping six seasons at the University of Delaware, making him an older prospect at 24 years old. He did earn all-conference honors in each of his past three campaigns for the Blue Hens, but he didn’t explode against lesser competition enough to make him a legitimate draft prospect.
Pitts landed with the Bears as an undrafted free-agent prospect, yet he didn’t even make it two full weeks into camp before being let go — and Chicago used his exit to sign a sixth tight end to the roster, which certainly says something.
The Patriots apparently saw enough in the 6-foot-1 pass-catcher to claim him on waivers. Is there a way he makes the roster? Sure, but he enters behind the likes of Smith-Schuster, DeVante Parker, Tyquan Thornton and Kendrick Bourne, at minimum. There’s even a pair of sixth-round wideouts in Kayshoun Boutte and Demario Douglas that New England liked more than Pitts to select them in this year’s draft.
Perhaps Pitts is able to beat the odds, but fans shouldn’t get too attached given the vast amount of hurdles in his way.