5. Kendrick Bourne, WR
One of the more frustrating parts of the 2023 experience was Kendrick Bourne's season-ending ACL tear. The injury came after the ex-Eastern Michigan product was off to the best start of his career, turning 37 catches into 406 yards with four TDs through eight games, nearly destroying the previous season's stat line (35-434-1) in half as many contests.
Had Bourne stayed perfectly healthy and continued his trajectory, he would have been on pace for career highs in receptions (79), receiving yards (864), and touchdowns (9) in 17 games. Although the Patriots' passing game was far from consistent, it's no coincidence that they went from averaging 200.4 passing yards (20th) with Bourne in the lineup compared to 185.8 (31st) following his injury.
While a lot of Patriots fans would be sad about a potential departure, it wouldn't be shocking.
The Pats have accomplished next to nothing throughout Bourne's three years with the franchise and although that doesn't seem like a ton of time, it could be for a player who had already played in the Super Bowl back in 2019. He might not be willing to go through another three years of missing out on that feeling with a rebuild scheduled in New England.
After how well leaving the organization worked out for fellow WR Jakobi Meyers last season, expect Patriots fans to be sad if Bourne takes a similar career path in March.
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