Rob Gronkowski, Shane Vereen and Danny Amendola are out, as is Aaron Dobson. Zach Sudfeld is nursing injuries. Wes Welker is in Denver. Aaron Hernandez is still in jail. Tonight the New England Patriots host the New York Jets and Tom Brady needs someone to throw the ball to.
While Julian Edelman will be the primary receiving option, Kenbrell Thompkins could be a dark horse candidate for week two’s opening game.
Thompkins was targeted 14 times in Sunday’s season opener, tied for the team lead with Amendola. While he dropped a catch in the end zone, the volume of targets was a promising sign. I know if I was an undrafted rookie playing my first game for a Super Bowl contender, I would have some nerves in my as well. Thompkins finished with four catches for 42 yards.
Remember that this is a guy who had 15 receptions this preseason for 166 yards, so the chemistry with Brady is there.
A big question mark is if Antonio Cromartie will cover Thompkins or Edelman. If I was Rex Ryan, I would put Cromartie on Edelman since Edelman has proven he can make the opposition pay. Ryan, however has muddled up so many choices in his tenure with the Jets, who knows what this guy is thinking (or if he his thinking at all). He might end up double covering Ryan Wendell.
Brady and the Pats will likely use Stevan Ridley and Edelman heavily tonight, as those are the only proven players the Pats have that are familiar with the system and have proven capable of handling the responsibility.
In shallower leagues, Thompkins might still be hard to trust, and there should be better options available. However, if you play in a deep league, or if you need a fill in already, Thompkins could be a suitable replacement. The Patriots are going to score touchdowns, Brady typically carves the Jets defense up and someone is going to be on the receiving end of that arm, why couldn’t it be Thompkins?
As always, I welcome your comments. If you think I’m wrong, I’m willing to listen. Just back it up with some facts and solid evidence. Thanks for reading and good luck this season.
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