The Patriots used some of their remaining cap space to add yet another wide receiver as they sign Andrew Hawkins to a one-year contract. Hawkins is mainly used in the slot but has the flexibility to play on the outside and is a dependable route runner with reliable hands. The receiver has taken carries out of the backfield as well as sweeps and end-arounds. Throw in experience returning kicks on special teams. His best season was in 2014 when he had over 60 catches and 800 yards receiving. Hawkins has dropped off in production but is looking to contribute for a contender.
Andrew said he was looking to play for a contender and has found just that with the Patriots. However, making this roster will not be smooth sailing for Hawkins as this receiving group is loaded with talent. Secure at the top sits Julian Edelman, Tom Brady’s go to target and the heart and soul of the Patriots, speedster Brandin Cooks, and ex-lacrosse star Chris Hogan. Malcolm Mitchell had a stand-out rookie season and will continue to work and look to build on that heading into his second season. Concluding the top five would be Danny Amendola who has shined for the Patriots in their two most recent super bowl runs.
That leaves Andrew as the sixth man in this receiving group. While it’s definitely possible, the odds are stacked against Hawkins especially since he will most likely have to beat out Danny Amendola and force the hand of Bill Belichick. If he can quickly pick up the Patriots playbook as well as get on the same page with Brady that will only increase his chances. It would be a bit of a shock to fans, but Belichick will do what is best for the team and if that means cutting fan-favorite Amendola in favor of Hawkins he will do just that. Either way, it will be exciting to see the high-level of competition at the receiving position and I will be rooting for Andrew who seems to be a stand-up guy and well liked around the league.