He may have started the game, but Aaron Dobson barely played for the New England Patriots in a big win over the Denver Broncos. Tom Brady may have been firing on all cylinders, but Dobson’s benching is still not good for his growth.
It seems like Josh McDaniels was sending a message to the rookie wide receiver after the Patriots went into the locker room down 24-0. Whether or not this was the case, it is pointless for McDaniels to try and develop rookie wide receivers. He has played musical chairs with both Dobson and Kenbrell Thompkins so much that it must have their heads spinning.
McDaniels might just be riding the hot hand as the two rookie wide receivers have struggled with consistency this season. In the last two games, Thompkins’ hands have been hot while Dobson’s hands have been cold. Dobson only tallied four receptions for 38 yards against the Carolina Panthers and did not get a single target against Denver.
These two disappointing lines are not because of Dobson. He simply does not get many targets. The rookie wide receiver has now seen just seven targets in the last six quarters. Out of those seven targets, Dobson has reeled in four passes and has drawn two defensive penalties. That is not bad at all.
Brady needs to throw to Dobson more, especially when looking deep. Dobson is the best vertical threat on the team, and that element is the weakness of the Patriots’ offense. If Dobson does not play, then you can kiss the deep ball goodbye. And if that happens, defenders will start covering the middle of the field. Then Brady becomes predictable, and thus vulnerable. Nobody wants to see that happen, and nobody has to if Dobson stays on the field.
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.