Entangled throughout all the news of the NFL trade deadline were some interesting overlooked headlines regarding the Patriots despite their quiet day on the trade front.
Even though they didn't make any moves before Tuesday's deadline, they weren't sitting in their office chairs in Foxboro doing nothing, and the calls they were making should pique fans' interest a bit when hearing who they were making calls about and who they were receiving calls (or not) for.
Additionally, Bill O'Brien made some interesting comments about Kayshon Boutte, who will be seeing more time on the field as soon as next week.
Bill O'Brien speaks highly of Kayshon Boutte despite weeks of being a healthy scratch
Now that Kendrick Bourne will be out for the rest of the season with an ACL injury and DeVante Parker will miss at least one game with a concussion, the Patriots' offense will look a lot different moving forward. That means guys like Kayshon Boutte, who has been a healthy scratch every week since opening weekend, will be given more opportunities on the field despite their limited usage through the first eight games.
But Boutte's benching has brought up a lot of questions regarding his coaching and development, two aspects that were concerns during his final year in college. At first, it seemed he was getting the doghouse treatment by Belichick for going 0/4 in the game against the Eagles, dropping some catchable passes that would have been significant to the Patriots' chances of winning the game.
Fortunately, and unfortunately, that doesn't appear to be the case. Whatever the real reason remains unknown, but Bill O'Brien assured those concerned that Boutte is a very coachable player and is just going through growing pains in transitioning from college to the NFL.
"I’ve always said that that, a rookie receiver, it’s a very difficult transition. Especially on the perimeter, because in college football, you’re not always seeing the same type of coverages that you see in professional football. It’s just the way it is. Sometimes, the transition to pro football is a little bit tougher. It takes a little bit longer."
It's a disappointing development after Boutte shined during the preseason, especially once fellow rookie receiver Demario Douglas missed some time with an injury. The hype picked up for the once-projected first-round draft pick, and it appeared the Patriots may have hit the jackpot with a late-round star in the making.
The excitement has since died down, with worries starting to brew, knowing he will be needed on the field for the rest of the season. However, O'Brien (once again) set the record straight and praised the 21-year-old for his work ethic and potential.
"Kayshon’s worked very hard and he’s showed glimpses of what he can be. I believe in him and I believe he’s got a good future."
It's quite the ringing endorsement for Boutte, who will hopefully be able to prove O'Brien right as soon as Week 9 against the Commanders next Sunday.