The New England Patriots built a dynasty on the back of some familiar, Hall of Fame players that contributed to multiple championship teams.
Even if you take Tom Brady out of the equation, legends like Rob Gronkowski on the offensive end, Richard Seymour and Ty Law on the defensive side, and even Adam Vinatieri on special teams helped New England completely dominate the AFC over the last two decades.
Unfortunately, not all Patriots get the benefit of such a long career in New England.
Some Patriots might’ve contributed to champions, but they were only able to stick around for one season.
While these six had very brief careers, their times in New England will not be forgotten.
These six Patriots were good in their one year in New England
No. 6: WR Malcolm Mitchell
Mitchell appeared to be the one who could break Belichick’s curse with regard to drafting wide receivers. The smooth route-runner out of Georgia became an instant hit with Brady and Josh McDaniels, recording 401 yards receiving and four touchdowns during his first season in the pros.
Mitchell had his coming-out part in New England’s comeback against the Atlanta Falcons in the Super Bowl. Mitchell had six catches for 70 yards, securing some huge catches in crucial situations. Mitchell looked like a long-term building block, but fate had other plans.
Malcolm Mitchell’s time with the Patriots was cut short
Mitchell never played again after that Super Bowl, as a knee injury wiped out his 2017 season. After another knee procedure in 2018, he was waived. He retired from football in 2019, leaving Patriots fans wondering what could have been. Mitchell clearly earned Brady’s trust, which can be notoriously difficult to acquire.
It’s genuinely sad that such a promising career was cut short by some lousy injury luck. Fortunately, Mitchell has made a go of it as a writer after football. He published his first children’s book in 2016, and he has even released a compilation of poetry.