New England acquired wide receiver Chad Ochocinco from the Bengals, according to ESPN, in the Pats' second marquee move of the day. Early Thursday morning, they were working to finalize a trade with the Redskins for defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth.
Ochocinco also restructured his contract to a three-year deal with New England, according to the report, and the Patriots surrendered late draft picks in 2012 and 2013.
Ochocinco gives the Patriots a legitimate outside option who can team up with wide receivers Wes Welker and Deion Branch, along with tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez.
Despite the fact that the Patriots led the NFL in scoring in 2010, the third receiver position was an issue. Brandon Tate struggled down the stretch with 13 receptions over his last 12 games.
The 33-year-old receiver doesn't even have to resemble the player he was in his prime, when he averaged 92 catches for 1,374 yards and nine touchdowns per season from 2003-07. To be effective, he simply needs to remain on the same page as quarterback Tom Brady, who was visibly frustrated with his younger targets at times in 2010.
Now with three veteran targets, Brady and the offense should be even smarter in 2011, which should be a scary thought after its efficiency level rose through the roof in 2010.