New England Patriots second-round rookie wide receiver Aaron Dobson has all the tools to be exactly the kind of receiver the Patriots need as the “X”. Dobson has the ability to be a No. 1 receiver with his blend of size and speed, and that’s not even mentioning his football IQ and ability to make circus style catches that would make even Brandon Lloyd proud. However, Dobson fell victim to what WEEI’s Christopher Price termed as a “sloppy” day of practice, as the Marshall product dropped four passes. Although he has had a good camp thus far, Dobson didn’t have the best preseason game either with a drop and only two catches on eight targets (then again, his quarterbacking failed him once Tom Brady was off the field).
During OTAs and minicamp, some of us were a little bit worried about Dobson’s ability to get things down as a rookie and contribute in the way the Patriots need him to, because he struggled with drops and miscommunication during training camp. He’s rectified those issues now, and ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss wrote in his mailbag, “Dobson turned things around after a less-than-smooth beginning in the spring and has made himself more into a factor in training camp.”
That’s always good news.
The New England Patriots once showed interest in Dashon Goldson(back when he was with the San Francisco 49ers) in the 2011 offseason, but he decided to stay with the 49ers since they were able to pay him more. Goldson praised Bill Belichick and stated his respect for the Patriots organization at the time.
This offseason, Goldson left San Francisco, since the 49ers weren’t willing to pay the almost obscene amount of money the Tampa Bay Buccaneers gave Goldson. Such is the price for a touted safety in this league, and the Bucs got the upgrade they wanted. While I think they overpaid for Goldson, the Bucs have shown that they are willing to do what it takes (Vincent Jackson and Carl Nicks are examples with both working well, while Eric Wright was a deal destined for damnation) to fill a big need.
According to a tweet from the Boston Globe’s Zuri Berry, Dashon Goldson “hinted” that he and the Patriots had “minor talks” this past offseason. The Patriots also had a need at safety, but they wisely filled it with a true strong safety in Adrian Wilson, who was undervalued whilst Goldson was overvalued. Wilson isn’t as good in coverage, but he can play the run, hit hard (the dude is huge), and cover underneath routes (just don’t ask him to play deep safety). His skills mesh well with what Devin McCourty does, but Goldson could have also been a fit if his asking price was modest, because the Patriots don’t always play with traditional strong and free safeties (they have also used LS and RS as designations there) and rarely used a safety in-the-box last year. I think that changes this year with Wilson and McCourty, though.