No Doubt about it: the New England Patriots could really use some help on the offsensive line. But it’s still March and their first regular season game isn’t for another six months so it’s safe to assume they will take care of that at some point.
But for now, they made a move that Patriots fans should be applauding — signing former Buffalo Bills wide receiver Chris Hogan to a three-year $12 million contract.
At 6-foot-1, 220 pounds, Hogan is a physical wide receiver who struggled to break into the league before finally finding his his niche in Buffalo.
No, Hogan isn’t the biggest deep ball threat out there. But he doesn’t really seem to drop many balls either. He had 36 receptions for 450 yards last year for the Bills. Those might not be standout numbers, but he is another guy teams will have to worry about.
Can he replace Brandon LaFell? No, he’s not that type of receiver. On the bright side, however, he was better in 2015 than LaFell so in reality, it’s an upgrade.
Hogan did not have as many catches as LaFell, but he caught balls at a significantly higher rate (61 percent) than LaFell’s 50 percent.
Who is he like that the Pats may have had in the past? Well, ESPN dropped the name David Givens. High expectations. But that would make Hogan quite the signing, wouldn’t it?
Hogan’s football IQ is considered strong — which is what makes him a fit for New England. The Patriots playbook is difficult to learn, so that will be Hogan’s biggest test in the coming months — figuring it all out.
It is unclear if the Patriots are done making moves at wideout. But it seems clear that they would like to restructure Danny Amendola’s contract. If they do not, he could be a goner just like LaFell. Hogan’s being on the team could mean Amendola goes — if he does not restructure.