2. Snag Another Tight End
New England had a significant injury scare earlier this week when Mike Gesicki suffered a mild dislocated shoulder during practice. While his injury isn’t believed to be overly serious, it’s still a concern that he’s already dealing with something during the preseason that could linger into the regular season as well.
With that in mind, the Patriots should consider bringing in another tight end as insurance in case Gesicki misses time or isn’t 100%. New England’s offense truly thrives when it has two quality pass-catchers at tight end, especially with a quarterback like Jones who relies on shorter throws. The team used that model to great success the last time Bill O’Brien was their offensive coordinator back in 2011, riding Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez to a Super Bowl appearance.
There aren’t a lot of options left at what is already a thin position to start with, but Cameron Brate profiles as a solid TE2 next to Hunter Henry. Brate is intriguing as a former Super Bowl champ and given his history with Tom Brady, which means New England’s coaching staff might be able to get the most out of him. He also went to Harvard, so he’s the type of smart player that Bill Belichick likes to have around.
If the Patriots aren’t going to add another wideout for Jones, they should at least make sure he has a strong tight end situation to count on.