The New England Patriots‘ potent offense has seemingly fallen apart in the 2013 off-season.
Wide receiver Wes Welker bolted to the Denver Broncos via free agency. Pro-Bowl tight end Rob Gronkowski underwent three surgeries to remove an infection in his left forearm and recently endured back surgery, potentially making him unavailable for the first two games of the upcoming regular season.
Wideout and special teams’ specialist Julian Edelman suffered a setback in May in rehabbing his injured foot that cost him the end of his 2012 season. He has since shed the walking boot he has worn for the past month and is now present at the Patriots training camp.
Still, his constant injury woes have been a growing concern for the Patriots’ organization, and there have even been some whispers that the he could be cut before the season starts. Given his chemistry with quarterback Tom Brady and the fact that there is essentially a brand new receiving corps, it is unlikely Edelman does not make the 53-man roster.
Alas, there are no guarantees in the NFL and Edelman simply cannot afford to get hurt in the pre-season.
The chaos continued with the startling investigation of Aaron Hernandez and his potential involvement in a homicide of a 27-year-old man near the tight end’s house in North Attelboro, MA. Hernandez is also being sued by Alexander Bradley for apparently shooting the man in the face.
Hernandez has yet to be ruled out as a suspect in the murder investigation in North Attelboro, according to WBZ’s Karen Anderson. While the situation remains fluid with little details, this is not the type of news the Patriots need to hear about one of their top playmakers. Hernandez, a top-tier tight end, will be counted on if Gronkowski is to miss any regular season time, so his possible involvement in a murder investigation is devastating to say the least.
Tom Brady may be the best quarterback in the league, but with so many question marks surrounding his offensive weapons, the Patriots could face some rare turmoil on the offensive side of the ball.