The New England Patriots desperately needed to fill out their wide receiver room, and they’re doing it in the form of a familiar face.
The Patriots are re-signing wide receiver Phillip Dorsett to a one-year contract, a source confirmed to NESN.com. Dorsett served as the Patriots’ No. 3/4 wide receiver last season, catching 32 passes for 290 yards with three touchdowns in 16 regular season games. He added five receptions for 70 yards with two touchdowns in the postseason before going catchless in Super Bowl LIII.
The Patriots previously only had wide receivers Julian Edelman, Matthew Slater, Braxton Berrios and Damoun Patterson on their roster at wide receiver. The Patriots must work over the offseason to continue to bolster that group, but bringing back Dorsett is a solid first step.
Dorsett struggled for snaps in the middle of the season with Edelman, Chris Hogan and Josh Gordon ahead of him on the depth chart. Wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson also was in the mix as a gadget player.
Patterson is headed to the Chicago Bears as a free agent, while Hogan still is on the market. Gordon was extended an original-round tender as a restricted free agent and likely will be back with the Patriots if reinstated from a suspension.
Dorsett currently is No. 2 on the Patriots’ depth chart behind Edelman. He’ll have to battle for a starting role with other receivers the Patriots inevitably will add this offseason. He had trouble rising up the depth chart last season despite a dire situation at wide receiver. He’ll have to hope for better success this season on a one-year prove it deal. It was clear Patriots quarter back Tom Brady liked throwing to Dorsett at times last season.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports