The Patriots fired a body at their gaping wide receiver hole on Wednesday, agreeing to terms with 31-year-old wide receiver Demaryius Thomas.
The news was first reported by Field Yates of ESPN.
While Thomas owns a name you recognize, he also owns a damaged Achilles that was torn less than four months ago.
So this one-year signing with “up to” a reported $6M doesn’t move the needle the way it would have four seasons ago when Thomas was still one of the best receivers in the NFL. The $6M is very incentive-laden.
This is a shot in the dark, taking a flier, hoping against hope. If it works it’s a savvy move. If it doesn’t and Thomas winds up following Eric Decker, Reggie Wayne, Torry Holt and Joey Galloway into the pantheon of great receivers who had an end of career cuppa coffee with the Patriots, then it’s no harm, no foul.
Rest assured, the $6M is going to take a lot of production for Thomas to perform and if he begins the season on the Physically Unable to Perform list and stays there for 10 games, he won’t be seeing $6M.
At this point, Thomas can join indefinitely suspended wide receiver Josh Gordon on the shelf labeled, “Maybe It’ll Work Out.”
Thomas wasn’t useless before the Achilles. After being traded from Denver to Houston at the trade deadline last season, he played in three games and had seven catches on nine targets for 99 yards and two touchdowns. In eight games with the Broncos, he had 36-402-3. In 2017, with a parade of horrific quarterbacks, Thomas had 83 catches for 949 yards.
So the skill isn’t years in the rearview. But the potential for more of it? It’s not quite looming on the horizon.
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