Former Patriots WR Deion Branch wasn’t thrilled with his All-Dynasty Team snub.
We still have faith in Patriots head coach Bill Belichick to turn this season around, but it goes without saying that he hasn’t found life easy without Tom Brady, who dismissed the possibility of inking a new contract with New England in favor of signing with the Buccaneers.
A lot more than Brady’s departure is tied to the Patriots’ struggles this season — like other losses in free agency, injuries and player opt outs — but even diehard fans can admit that the days of this team being a perennial championship favorite are over, at least for now.
As if that wasn’t already clear, the Patriots decided to put an exclamation point on that sentiment by releasing their All-Dynasty Team this week. Considering that there were over two decades-worth of players to choose from, there were bound to be a few snubs.
However, former wide receiver Deion Branch failing to get a sniff of recognition is nothing short of laughable when you take into account his playoff success, and he rightfully took to Twitter on Friday to convey his disappointed reaction.
Outside of Randy Moss, the Patriots haven’t exactly been blessed with superstar talent at the WR position over the years, but they’ve had a legion of low-profile names who managed to carve out a really nice career for themselves with the franchise. Most of them — including Troy Brown, Wes Welker and Julian Edelman — made the team.
All told, it’s genuinely difficult to make a case for any one of those four borderline Patriots legends to be benched — for lack of a better term — in favor of Branch, but why not just add a fifth receiver? The fact that Danny freaking Amendola was listed as an honorable mention over the former Super Bowl MVP (!) is the epitome of disrespectful and is probably where most of his frustration stems from.
In total, Brown contributed 328 receptions for 4,297 yards and 24 touchdowns across seven seasons with the Patriots. Those are nice numbers, but the former second-round pick really made a name for himself in the playoffs, specifically the Super Bowl. In 2004 against Carolina, he racked up 143 yards and a TD on 10 catches and earned MVP honors the following year vs Philadelphia after another immaculate performance in which he posted 11 receptions for 133 yards.
To say that Branch was a huge reason why the Patriots won both of those rings would be an understatement and makes it all the more maddening that he wasn’t at least given an honorable mention on the All-Dynasty Team.
Again, we’re not saying that he should have made it ahead of the other four receivers. Moss and Welker formed one of the most unstoppable wideout tandems in the NFL for about a three-year stretch and the duration for which Edelman and Brown were focal points of the passing game was immense to the success of the dynasty.
The bottom line, however, is that Branch was also vital to its success and the Patriots really should have done more to acknowledge his contributions.