Patriots named best fit for three-time Pro Bowler this offseason

New Orleans Saints v Indianapolis Colts
New Orleans Saints v Indianapolis Colts / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

Among the many improvements to the offensive roster the Patriots would address this offseason was a wide receiver, a weaker unit over the last several years. The new regime made the great decision to re-sign Kendrick Bourne in free agency to kick things off, but it failed to bring more game-changing talent to improve the offense.

Because they were equipped with a healthy cap space to use, the belief was they would go all in on pursuing the top talent heading to free agency or even make a big swing in the trade market, especially for the few players who had been connected to the team in recent years.

However, they couldn't do any of that. The first miss came when Calvin Ridley chose to sign with the Titans over the Patriots, making it another significant loss of a receiver to the Tennessee team in back-to-back offseasons.

Instead, they eventually signed former Vikings receiver KJ Osborn, who is a solid addition and drafted Javon Baker and Ja'Lynn Polk, both of whom are explosive in their own right. But many believe it's not enough to dramatically improve the offense's chance of being successful in 2024.

That's likely why Bleacher Report's Kristopher Knox believes New England should sign the top remaining free agent receiver available before the season begins.

Patriots named best fit for three-time Pro Bowler this offseason

In his latest piece determining the best remaining free agents and where they would best fit, Knox chose former Saints receiver and three-time Pro Bowler Michael Thomas for the Patriots. Given the explosive nature he was known for before suffering several injuries since the 2020 season, he would be an incredible addition to the roster.

However, because he's missed so much time over the last four years, he's more questionable than anything, which might not be a risk the Patriots are willing to take. But Knox believes he is still one of the best in the league and could immediately boost their offense if signed.

"Former Saints star Michael Thomas hasn't played a full season or been a Pro Bowler since 2019. The injuries that have plagued him ever since make it hard to believe that the 31-year-old will ever be an elite wideout again.

However, Thomas is still a 6'3", 212-pound target and one of the top route-runners in the NFL. He showed flashes of his previous form in 2023, finishing with 39 catches for 448 yards and a touchdown in 10 games.

Thomas is very much worth a flier based on his experience, route-savvy and measurables alone. He'd be particularly valuable to a team with an underwhelming receiving corps and a young quarterback who could benefit from said experience.

... Thomas could also aid the New England Patriots, who still have arguably the league's most lackluster receiving corps, even after using a second-round pick on Ja'Lynn Polk.

The Patriots may start the season with journeyman Jacoby Brissett at quarterback, but at some point, they're likely to turn the page to rookie third overall selection Drake Maye."

He makes some valid points, and because Thomas could likely be signed on a cheaper contract, it could make him more enticing. The worst-case scenario is that he doesn't work out, and the Patriots have to cut him. But where's the harm in that?

The best case scenario is he elevates the receiving corps and plays closer to his old self than initially anticipated. Feels like a win/win for both sides.

More Patriots coverage: