Patriots

Fantasy football 2019: These stats show Josh Gordon makes Tom Brady's value much higher

Fantasy football 2019: These stats show Josh Gordon makes Tom Brady's value much higher

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady stepped up when it mattered most in 2018 and led his team to another Super Bowl championship, but he was not an elite fantasy football player last season.

Brady still threw for 4,355 yards with 29 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. It was a down year (by his lofty standards) statistically for Brady, but he wasn't exactly in a great situation. Julian Edelman missed the first four games due to suspension. Rob Gronkowski missed multiple games because of injury and didn't look like his old dominant self when he did play. Chris Hogan was ineffective throughout the season, and Josh Gordon was suspended for the last month or so. 

A better fantasy football season from Brady should be expected in 2019, and one reason for that is the return of Gordon. The veteran wideout has been reinstated by the NFL and is no longer suspended. 

The Patriots, and Brady, in particular, were a much tougher offense to defend when Gordon was on the field last season. The 28-year-old wide receiver gives the Patriots offense a much-needed deep threat, and his excellent strength and hands allow him to make difficult contested catches in traffic. Gordon has tallied 40 receptions for 720 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games with New England.

Here's a look at Brady's stats with and without Gordon last season. The difference is quite obvious.

With numbers like those, both Gordon and Brady should rise in fantasy football rankings ahead of your league's draft.

Here's another stat to consider: Since 2006, Gordon's 11.3 yards per attempt is the highest total by a Brady pass-catcher. This stat is from a small sample size, but it does show the impressive chemistry Brady and Gordon already have developed. It's clear Brady trusts Gordon to come down with the football, and last season's win over the Indianapolis Colts serves as one example.

The concern with Gordon is his ability to remain on the field. He was reinstated last year and got suspended again. He's been suspended multiple times in his career, so there's definitely a good amount of risk involved when drafting him or Brady in your fantasy league. But if Gordon is able to stay away from any more suspensions, the Patriots offense and Brady should benefit in a huge way.

Dominate your fantasy football league with our 2019 draft kit>>>

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Five Patriots plays among Top 30 on NFL 100 list

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Five Patriots plays among Top 30 on NFL 100 list

Last week, the NFL released all but the Top 30 of its 100 greatest plays as part of its 100th-anniversary celebration. Seven plays involving the Patriots cracked that list.

This week, it was a countdown of plays 30 to 1 and the Pats found themselves well-represented again. 

The list was selected by a panel of 50 voters (the same panel that votes for the NFL Awards and the All-Pro team), including our own Tom E. Curran, who listed his Top 20 plays earlier this summer, here. Voters were given a ballot of 100 plays and asked to rank 50.

The rest of the countdowns on NFL Network continue next week with Greatest Games (Sept. 27 & Oct. 4), Characters (Oct. 11 & Oct. 18), Game-Changers (Oct. 25 & Nov. 1) and Teams (Nov. 8 & Nov. 15).

The No. 1 play was Franco Harris' "Immaculate Reception" touchdown in the Pittsburgh Steelers' December 1972 playoff victory over the Oakland Raiders.

 

 

Report: Antonio Brown's latest incident 'enraged' Robert Kraft

Report: Antonio Brown's latest incident 'enraged' Robert Kraft

The Patriots gave Antonio Brown a shot at redemption when they signed him earlier this month, then another when they kept the wide receiver amid allegations of sexual assault.

But on Friday, enough was enough. When intimidating text messages sent by Brown to one of his accusers leaked to the public, that was the final straw.

Bill Belichick and Robert Kraft came to the conclusion cutting ties with Brown was in the best interest of the team. According to Jeff Howe of The Athletic, the decision stemmed from Kraft being "enraged" upon hearing about Brown's latest incident.

Howe writes:

Kraft, who was on a business trip, became enraged Friday when he heard the details of Brown’s most recently reported incident of text messaging harassment of a former female acquaintance. Kraft and Belichick spoke and decided together to officially release Brown just 11 days after the Patriots signed the controversial star receiver, according to sources.

Shortly before the release was announced, Belichick walked off the podium in the middle of his press conference following a flurry of questions related to Brown. He did note, however, “There are some things that we’re looking into.”

Brown's tenure in New England lasted only 11 days and one game -- last Sunday's 43-0 win over the Dolphins. Now, he's again a free agent faced with hoping another team will be willing to give him yet another chance.

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