The New England Patriots have made some major moves on offense this offseason, so there are some questions surrounding the team. However, one former Patriot recently expressed no concerns about the changes that could be coming to the unit in 2019.
Former Patriots running back Shane Vereen recently served as a guest analyst for ESPN and spoke about what to expect from the offense in 2019. Here's what he said about the unit, per ESPN's Mike Reiss.
It's an offense that shifts and morphs to the talent of its players. Josh McDaniels is not stuck in his ways of how he's going to play this game, or call each game. Every game, every week is different. They have different matchups. Different schemes per defense, for each week. That makes the offense difficult to learn, but very difficult to stop because you never really know how they're going to attack you each and every week.
With that being said, with Gronk out, they will have guys to come in to fill his spot. They won't be Gronk, don't get me wrong. There is not another Gronk. We won't see another Gronk for a very, very long time, if we ever see another one. But they have enough talent on that team and they have enough wherewithal to figure it out and still be successful. They've done it for years.
It's good to see that Vereen is confident that the Patriots will figure out a way to replace Gronk. The team lost the top three tight ends from their depth chart last year as Gronkowski retired, Dwayne Allen was cut, and Jacob Hollister was traded. So, they will have a new look at the position this fall.
Veterans Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Matt LaCosse will likely have a chance to hold down the fort while Ben Watson serves a four-game suspension, but younger players like Ryan Izzo or undrafted free agent Andrew Beck could also get a chance.
Still, it will be interesting to see what they ultimately plan on doing at the tight end position, as that has suddenly become the team's biggest question mark on offense. McDaniels will certainly have his work cut out for him in finding a solution there.
But as Vereen pointed out, the Patriots have been adept at replacing talented departures over the course of the years, and they will likely figure out a way to keep their offense humming in 2019. They could choose to adapt their offense to make it more receiver-friendly, while using fewer tight ends, or they could even shift to a ground-and-pound style because of the talent and diversity they have in their backfield.
The Patriots have options, and it will be interesting to see how they choose to run their offense for the '19 season.
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