Tuesday, February 5, 2013
The Pats' need for speed
By Tim Kavanagh
Following the Super Bowl this weekend, Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com offered up his take on areas where the New England Patriots could improve: finding impactful defenders, adding speed at WR, improving at situational football, finding a versatile powerhouse like Vonta Leach and finding a homerun hitter for the return game. There may be a way they can tick off two of the items from that checklist by adding just a single player.
We've been speculating on the eventual landing spot for Chicago Bears return master Devin Hester -- if the club yields to his request of a release -- and the Pats would certainly make a logical choice as his destination: they need the help on returns for sure, and Hester would have another opportunity to try his hand at WR, something that's not guaranteed elsewhere. In truth, the Patriots' cupboard could be quite bare at the WR position in 2013: Wes Welker, Julian Edelman, Deion Branch and Donte' Stallworth are all hitting free agency, and some believe Brandon Lloyd could be a cap casualty.
Another possibility along those same lines -- though certainly a secondary talent compared to Hester -- is Ted Ginn, who is unlikely to return to the 49ers after a season where he was rarely used at WR, and was supplanted to some degree as the return man by LaMichael James.