The New England Patriots suffered another loss last week, falling to 2-5 on the season. However, despite the unfortunate record, there was a silver lining in wide receiver Jakobi Meyers. The 2019 undrafted free agent had a fantastic game, recording six receptions for 58 yards on 10 targets. The Patriots have been looking for playmakers all year, and Meyers looks like he could be a permanent fixture in this offense. Even when N’Keal Harry and Julian Edelman get healthy, Meyers should still be the top option in this passing attack.
New England Patriots Starting Wide Receiver Job Belongs to Jakobi Meyers
Throughout the season, the Patriots have struggled to find reliable targets for quarterback Cam Newton. While N’Keal Harry made some strides from his rookie year, his play still left a lot to be desired. Additionally, Julian Edelman never looked like his old self and might be at the end of the road. Damiere Byrd is a fine depth piece, but he’s nobody’s idea of a top option in the passing game.
Enter Jakobi Meyers. While he’s obviously not the second-coming of Randy Moss, Meyers demonstrated the ability to get open against physical coverages, make contested catches, and ultimately be a reliable chain-mover in this offense. Time and time again, Newton trusted Meyers in key situations, and Meyers was typically up for the challenge.
Jakob Meyers is looking like the guy we thought the Pats were getting out of NC State.
Tough as hell,
quick strong hands,
and he runs routes like he knows where knows where he's going but he's gonna f*** with you on his way there pic.twitter.com/9gbwQ1CXqH
— Taylor Kyles (@tkyles39) November 1, 2020
This wasn’t a one-week outlier, either. Last week, Meyers replaced an injured N’Keal Harry and looked like the best offensive player on the field. While that might not be saying too much, it’s still worth noting that Meyers played some solid football and made a few impressive catches during that blowout loss.
Additionally, Meyers flashed his potential throughout his rookie season. While he clearly struggled to get on the same page as Tom Brady, he looked good with the ball in his hands. Those playbook issues appear to be a thing of the past, as Meyers looks far more comfortable in his second professional season.
Not really a Brady highlight per se but my God Jakobi Meyers has so much potential pic.twitter.com/HDweQ5O5u5
— Dave Latham, Lifelong Bucs Fan (@DLPatsThoughts) November 25, 2019
How Meyers Fits in the Future
The New England Patriots are 2-5 and are clearly looking towards the future. Even if they manage to make an unlikely trip to the playoffs, they probably won’t make too much noise once there. The team should spend the rest of the year figuring out how their young pieces fit into their overall rebuilding plan.
Meyers is a great undrafted find, but he’s probably not the type of guy you build an offense around. The team is going to need to find Julian Edelman’s replacement sooner rather than later, and Meyers probably isn’t talented enough to handle that type of responsibility. However, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a future with this team.
Meyers has the ability to line up outside and in the slot and get open against all types of coverages. Even when not open, Meyers has shown an ability to outmuscle defenders and win contested catches at an above-average rate. The Patriots should still look to upgrade their pass-catching talent in the offseason, but Meyers should stick around for a while and would be a perfect fit for the Danny Amendola role in this offense.
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