It took them all summer, but the Patriots finally made a splash in free agency by signing running back Ezekiel Elliott. While his best days are probably behind him, Elliott will pair with Rhamondre Stevenson to form a potent 1-2 punch in New England’s backfield.
Just because the Patriots signed Elliott doesn’t mean their offseason shopping has to end yet, however. Their regular-season opener against the Eagles is still over three weeks away, so there’s still time to add to the roster and address any remaining weaknesses before Week 1.
If New England is serious about contending in the loaded AFC East, there’s still work to be done. Here are three offseason moves the Patriots still need to make after signing Zeke.
3 Offseason Moves the Patriots Still Need to Make
1. Sign A Wide Receiver
Now that the Patriots have addressed their RB2 situation to replace Damien Harris, they need to pivot to their most glaring offseason need: wide receiver.
New England came close to adding a WR1 during its pursuit of DeAndre Hopkins, only to lose him to the Titans. It’s too late to land one now, but there’s still time to add another wideout and bolster the depth in the receiver room.
After giving Elliott a one-year, incentive-laden deal, the Patriots should follow a similar strategy with a wide receiver. Former stars such as Kenny Golladay and Julio Jones are still available, as are established veterans like Jarvis Landry and Sammy Watkins.
While none of those players are particularly attractive at this stage in their careers and are unlikely to supercharge New England’s offense, one of them would still be better than nothing. Mac Jones needs as many weapons as possible if he wants to get his career back on track this year, and having JuJu Smith-Schuster as his No. 1 option doesn’t seem particularly appealing.
Each day that goes by is one less day that Jones has to build chemistry with a new receiver, so it would behoove the Pats to get him one sooner rather than later.