Making the 53-man roster is a big accomplishment. Making the starting lineup is an even bigger accomplishment. But neither of those things come with any guarantees that they will last.
The NFL is a cutthroat business, and there aren’t many coaches that embody it more than Bill Belichick.
The Patriots can’t afford many early struggles this season, and anyone who isn’t up to the task in Week 1 is facing a real chance of getting benched immediately
Here are three Pats players who could be benched already in Week 1.
Patriots Who Could Be Benched vs. Eagles
The Patriots wide receiver room is constantly in flux, and the range of possible outcomes for every player is massive. Singling out Kendrick Bourne is pointing out that he’s the most likely, but JuJu and DeVante Parker both also need to prove they deserve their spots too.
Bourne struggled in 2022 though, not getting to see the field nearly as much as he did in his first year with the Pats, and frankly not deserving to.
Bourne wasn’t as bd as, say, Nelson Agholor, but that wasn’t saying much. While he had a solid 72.9% catch rate on his 48 targets, he still averaged just 9.0 yards per target — 2.5 fewer than Parker did.
Pro Football Focus also gave Bourne a pretty weak overall grade of 63.6, and most of the positive impact on that grade came early in the year. He graded out below 60 in eight of his final 11 games.
It’s two unproven rookies behind Bourne on the depth chart right now, but Kayshon Boutte and especially Demario Douglas really impressed in training camp.
If Bourne isn’t playing at the level we need, it won’t be long before a rookie takes his place.