3. Hindsight makes 2023 offseason look absolutely brutal
The Patriots really failed in the 2023 offseason, didn't they? I mean, if you look at an itemized list of things they should have done, they sort of did the opposite.
Let Jakobi Meyers leave in free agency and opt instead to sign JuJu Smith-Schuster? Horrible decision.
Leave the idea of signing wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins on the table and let Mike Vrabel and the Titans have him? Terrible decision.
Draft a kicker in the fourth round of a class that features studs at receiver all over the place? Very bad decision, indeed.
I'm not really sure what Belichick and the rest of the Patriots' brain trust were thinking with some of these moves. Jakobi Meyers had become the most reliable target for Mac Jones. You took away the guy's coach and top target in consecutive years and expected what?
And the Chad Ryland selection would have been okay...if it would have been okay. But Ryland really struggled as a rookie, connecting on just 64 percent of his kicks. You can cherry-pick the NFL Draft any year, but this was the year of the wide receiver and tight end, and the Patriots left guys like Charlie Jones (Bengals), Dontayvion Wicks (Packers), and Puka Nacua (BYU) on the board.
The Saints managed to find a stud kicker after the NFL Draft in Blake Grupe. The Patriots were out there drafting an entire special teams unit.
Ultimately, the 2023 offseason can't be considered anything short of a failure for Bill Belichick and the Patriots.
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