After watching yesterday’s game, it was clear that the New England Patriots need help at wide receiver. While there are some options available on the free agent market, the best option may come internally. That option is rookie second-round pick Aaron Dobson, who was inactive for the first game.
Though many people consider Dobson “raw,” he did not get as many snaps in the preseason as fellow rookie wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins. Dobson has boatload of upside, standing at 6-foot-3, 210 pounds with a 4.40 40-yard dash. His production at Marshall University was underwhelming, but that can be attributed more to poor quarterback play than anything. This young receiver looked like the real deal on film, especially with his amazing hands.
And it’s not like his preseason play was bad either. When on the field, Dobson showed the ability to make big plays. Big plays are something that this offense needs, especially considering that the top trio of Danny Amendola, Julian Edelman and Thompkins are not big-play threats.
Speaking of Thompkins, the rookie undrafted free agent did not show much in the season opener. It was just one game, but Thompkins looked nervous out there. He was rushing his routes and sometimes even appeared to be in the wrong place. His hands were not that good either. Thompkins’ separation was awful as well. Many Patriots fans thought that he was more pro-ready than Dobson, and he could make more of an immediate impact. However, it does not appear that way.
Bill Belichick simply has to swallow his pride and let his drafted players play before his training camp darlings. Dobson clearly has more upside than Thompkins and can discover some of that if Tom Brady is throwing him the ball. When healthy, Dobson should start opposite Amendola. That would give the Patriots’ offense the best chance to succeed.
Philip Alexander is a New England Patriots writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @steely0906, “like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.