On Friday morning, it was reported by Ian Rapoport that the New England Patriots plan on hosting free agent wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins on a visit next week. The wheels have officially begun turning in the direction of Hopkins.
The Friday morning mini-bombshell comes about a week after Hopkins was cut by the Arizona Cardinals. The 30-year-old future Hall of Fame wide receiver is now free to sign with any team of his choosing, which is surely an attractive thing for him.
There were reports that DeAndre Hopkins wanted to play for a certain quarterback, but new reports surfaced that he wants to keep his mind very open and does not want to limit himself to one or only a few teams. I think this is clearly evidenced in Hopkins going on a free agent visit with the Tennessee Titans, who are clearly in a rebuilding phase.
But, Rapoport reports that he is set to visit the New England Patriots next week, which is massive news. There was some uncertainty if DeAndre Hopkins would have any interest at all in coming to New England due to how he was treated by Bill O'Brien when both were in Houston.
O'Brien shipped him to the Arizona Cardinals for a lemon-lime Gatorade and a bag of cheese puffs, but it does seem like both side are willing to move on from that, which was several years ago. Now, would DeAndre Hopkins help the Patriots in the way they hope?
I think the answer is a resounding yes. To me, Hopkins is the one free agent left on the market that can make the New England Patriots appreciably better. They already do have a solid stable of weapons on offense. However, while their stable is deep, there really isn't anyone who is elite or will make opposing defenses worry.
Hopkins could slide into that role, and he'd then form a nice duo with JuJu Smith-Schuster. Add in two very good running backs, two above-average tight ends, and what could be a solid offensive line, the Patriots' offense could be right where they need to be for 2023.