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Tom Brady confident in Patriots’ group of wide receivers

Ryan Hannable
September 07, 2018 - 3:48 pm
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FOXBORO — The Patriots will go into Sunday’s Week 1 matchup against the Texans with arguably one of the worst receiving groups Tom Brady has ever had.

With Julian Edelman suspended the first four games, he will have Chris Hogan, Phillip Dorsett, Cordarrelle Patterson, Chad Hansen and Riley McCarron on the receiver depth chart, although it’s unlikely all five will be active.

Despite a lot of inexperience, Brady says he is confident in the group.

“I have confidence in them, certainly,” he said Friday. “Phillip [Dorsett] and Chris [Hogan] have obviously … I played a lot with them last year. Cordarrelle [Patterson] is new. He’s done some good things. That’s the reason why he’s here. He’s a really good player. He’s been productive in the league. To be on this team, you have to be a good football player. And the guys who are out there, I certainly have a lot of confidence in. We’re all going to be learning on the fly, and you’ve got to build as the season goes. We’re in a certain spot now, but this is not where we want to be as we get through the season. Every week, we want to build on things, and there’s no way to replicate what we’re about to go up against. That’s why you have to go through it. We’ll see where we’re at.”

Since it is only Week 1, Brady’s connection will only grow as the year goes on with those players and the quarterback knows that. After all, this is his 19th season.

“I think that’s part of the challenge of this particular position, when it comes to offensive football,” he said. “There are a lot of moving parts from year to year. You may be really good offensively in one area and through free agency or competition, they don’t make it, you have to morph the offense to what the guys do well. I’ve been in the same offense a long time, so in a lot of ways, the system is morphed to what my skill sets have been, and other people have to come in and really fill what that particular role is for them. 

“It’s a tough system to play in for a receiver. I definitely don’t think it’s easy, and I know that because we’ve had a lot of guys come from a lot of different places. And there’s a lot of memorization. Being on the same page with the quarterback. Changing routes at the line of scrimmage. Changing routes in the middle of the play. And you have to be on the same page. So we try to morph the offense to what we all do a good job at, and those things change over the course of the season, with different guys who come in and out. Hopefully, we can do a good job of that this week.”

The challenge this week against Houston will get getting the ball out quickly, as it has one of the best defensive fronts in football. And with inexperienced receivers that could be a potential problem.

Related: Rex Burkhead will play vs. Texans, but is he 100 percent?

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