The Patriots are ready to kick off their preseason schedule this week. New England’s opener is set for Thursday, Aug. 10 at 7 p.m. ET and will take place against the Houston Texans at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough — the only home match on the team’s exhibition slate.
While the Pats are spending this week preparing for the Texans, there’s still time for them to make some moves before Houston comes to town. New England has the room and money to add to its roster after missing out on DeAndre Hopkins in free agency, offering hope that the team will pull off a last-second splash.
Here are three last-minute signings the Patriots should make before their first preseason game.
3 Signings Patriots Need to Make
1. Ezekiel Elliott
With New England apparently out on Dalvin Cook, the Pats should pivot to another running back to upgrade their backfield.
Ezekiel Elliott is still available, and New England is reportedly interested in him based on the latest rumors.
While Elliott is no longer the monster RB1 he was earlier in his career, he can still be an effective RB2, as he showed working alongside Tony Pollard in the Cowboys’ backfield last year. Elliott was especially lethal on the goal line, punching in 12 touchdowns and tying the second-highest rushing TD total of his career.
That would make the 28-year-old a great complement to Rhamondre Stevenson, who is three years younger than Zeke and has a lot less wear on his legs. Stevenson also isn’t as efficient at getting into the end zone as Elliott, managing just 10 rushing touchdowns over his first two seasons combined.
Elliott has seen his total carries decline every year since 2018 and posted the lowest yards per carry of his career last year (3.8), but Stevenson’s presence will help keep him fresh and give New England’s offense another threat on the goal line, which would help improve the team’s brutal red zone numbers from last season.