Could Patriots Benefit From Facing DeAndre Hopkins-Less Cardinals In 2022?

The Patriots are scheduled to play in Arizona


The Patriots racked up seven consecutive wins during the 2021 campaign, and on top of playing their best football of the season, New England also benefitted from a few of its opponents being without key contributors.

The Patriots played the Cleveland Browns without star Nick Chubb in Week 10, the Atlanta Falcons on a short week without Cordarrelle Patterson and Calvin Ridley in Week 11 and capped it off with a Tennessee Titans team that was missing both Derrick Henry and A.J. Brown in Week 12.

Well, it looks like there’s a chance New England could benefit from another tough opponent being without one of its best players in the 2022 season, as well.

The Arizona Cardinals, who are set to host the Patriots at State Farm Stadium, will be without All-Pro wideout DeAndre Hopkins for the first six games of the season. Hopkins will be suspended for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. Hopkins will not be allowed at Arizona’s facility from the end of the preseason until the conclusion of the team’s sixth regular-season game.

Should the Patriots get to travel to Arizona within the first six weeks of the season, it would help New England avoid one of the most talented wideouts on its schedule. And with the Patriots trotting out questionable depth at cornerback, that certainly would serve as a welcomed development.

Unfortunately for the Patriots, they still will have a date with Davante Adams (Las Vegas Raiders), Ja’Marr Chase (Cincinnati Bengals), Stefon Diggs (Buffalo Bills), Tyreek Hill (Miami Dolphins) and Justin Jefferson (Minnesota Vikings), among others.

But with the AFC East seemingly looking like more of a challenge, especially given New York’s recent NFL draft and Miami’s offseason moves, it’s fair to say the Patriots could use any helping hand they can get — even if we haven’t hit OTAs yet.

The Patriots will have their Hopkins-related fate determined when the NFL releases its 2022 season schedule, which is set for May 12.

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at Arizona Cardinals
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