Bill Belichick Reveals Patriots Did ‘Lot Of Work’ On This Jets Receiver In Free Agency

'Pretty familiar with him'


Bill Belichick on Wednesday did something he rarely does: break semi-interesting Patriots news.

At one point while speaking with reporters, New England’s head coach was asked about Jets receivers Jamison Crowder and Keelan Cole. Both players sat out New York’s season opener but are expected to play Sunday against the Patriots.

Belichick revealed that New England during the offseason actually took a strong look at Cole, who wound up signing a free agent deal with the Jets.

“They’re both good players,” Belichick said. “We’ve seen a lot of Crowder in the past. Cole, did a lot of work on him in free agency. Pretty familiar with him. Both good receivers. Crowder’s spent a lot of time as an inside receiver, but can do other things.

“Cole’s got a lot of versatility — play inside, outside.”

Cole was a solid player over four seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The undrafted wideout averaged 40 receptions, 561 yards and three touchdowns per campaign.

Of course, New England eventually inked deals with then-free agent wideouts Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne.

Belichick also was asked whether the Patriots pursued former Tennessee Titan Corey Davis, who caught five balls for 97 yards and two touchdowns in his Jets debut.

“We looked at all the players in free agency.”

That might be somewhat of a fib, as multiple early offseason reports indicated New England had very little interest in Davis. That would not have stopped them from at least doing due diligence, however.

Davis had a career season in 2020, catching 65 balls (tied for career-high) while setting new personal bests with 984 yards and five touchdowns.

The Patriots will visit rookie quarterback Zach Wilson and the Jets on Sunday. Multiple starters were absent Wednesday for New England’s first Week 2 practice.

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