Early concerns at OTAs prompts critical question for Patriots

May 11, 2024; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Drake Maye (10) hands the ball
May 11, 2024; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Drake Maye (10) hands the ball / Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

A big concern for the Patriots roster this offseason was the offense, which desperately needed to dramatically improve before the start of the new season. Other than addressing the quarterback position, the receiving corps needed help, and the belief was that the new regime would make a much-needed trade to acquire the game-changing WR1 the team needed.

That never happened, but they did draft two receivers in early rounds last month: Ja'Lynn Polk in the second and Javon Baker in the third. Plus, K.J. Osborn was signed in free agency.

They were great moves and both rookies look like they'll be solid additions to the roster, which seems more evident by the day. However, there are still some who believe the offense is lacking a true WR1 and feel Jerod Mayo and Eliot Wolf need to make the move to get one before the 2024 season begins.

That has become a bigger concern after watching the first day of OTAs, according to MassLive's Mark Daniels.

Early concerns at OTAs prompts critical question for Patriots

The first day of organized team activities started for the Patriots on Monday, and all focus was on the new-look offense.

Daniels shared an observation he made while watching the practice unfold, emphasizing it's still very early in the offseason, but noted that the offense struggled a bit more than expected. The receivers weren't performing that well, either, which has already created some concerns.

Any concerns surrounding the current roster seem far-fetched. It's the first day of a voluntary practice, and it's not anywhere near the level of an actual game. It seems more likely that some are worried about the level of talent that might be lacking, stemming from the WR1 argument many have had this offseason.

Mayo and Wolf had said they were exploring a trade for a receiver of that caliber before the draft, which might not be the case now that they drafted Baker and Polk. Their options are more limited now because of that, but there are a few players to look into still.

Tee Higgins' future with the Bengals remains uncertain. There's also been chatter about a possible trade for Bucs' Chris Godwin, who will be playing on the final year of his contract this season. Others like Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel seem more unlikely now, and any other receiver that the Patriots could benefit from doesn't seem to be a potential trade target.

As Daniels said, it's still early in the offseason, so concerns surrounding the receivers could dissipate as the summer progresses. If not, though, Mayo and Wolf will need to consider making a trade sooner rather than later because the longer they wait, the less likely one will be available.

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