By: Ian Logue
Could Indianapolis Colts Reciever Reggie Wayne Be Catching Passes from Tom Brady next season?
Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald had an interesting mention in her Sunday football notes about free agent receiver Reggie Wayne, who apparently is open to the thought of playing with the Patriots.
Guregian caught up with former Patriot Willie McGinest, who is now an NFL Network analyst. McGinest cited an on-air chat with Wayne and asked him about the potential of playing in New England.
“It came up in the conversation would he ever want to play for the Patriots,” McGinest told the newspaper. “He smiled and said, ‘Who wouldn’t want to play there?’
“If it could have worked with Chad (Ochocinco), it would have been good. It didn’t. I just think [Tom Brady] has a lot of weapons, but he can always use that stretch-the-field receiver. When they had Randy (Moss) there, it really made it tough for teams to stop them. Reggie Wayne is somebody who could stretch the field. He has great hands, he’s a professional who could pick up the system. Having another big-time receiver like that would put it over the top.”
With Wes Welker, and Deion Branch also set to be a free agents this offseason, the Patriots have some tough decisions to make. The initial thought is that they’ll franchise Welker if an agreement on a long-term deal can’t be reached, and in all likelihood they’ll bring back Branch at a reasonable deal. But they learned the hard way that they’ll need at least one more receiver to compliment what ended up being a depleted group without Rob Gronkowski in the line-up.
Wayne, who is 33, has been durable during his career, having played in all 16 games in nearly every season in the NFL. He’s coming off of what he would probably consider a down year, catching just 75 passes for 960 yards after having seven straight years of finishing with over 1,000 yards. A lot of that likely had to do with who was throwing the football, as Peyton Manning had been the guy feeding him the ball over that span. Manning’s future in Indianapolis appears to be over, so it would be to Wayne’s benefit to move on to a team like the Patriots where he’d certainly see his productivity potentially go up with Brady throwing him the football.
It’s an interesting idea and you have to be intrigued at the thought of Brady potentially having Welker, Wayne, Aaron Hernandez, Gronkowski, Branch, and a more seasoned Chad Ochocinco in the mix next season. We’ll have to wait and see how it all plays out when free agency begins on March 13th.