The Patriots sure have a lot of faith in WR Mohamed Sanu, it seems.
Desperate for any semblance of production from the wide receiver position beyond Julian Edelman, the Patriots elected to strike a midseason trade for Falcons veteran Mohamed Sanu in exchange for a second-round pick at last year’s deadline. At the time, it seemed like a reasonable deal, but it shortly proved to be a disaster for New England.
Across eight games (six starts), Sanu failed to establish a true rapport with Tom Brady as he registered just 26 receptions for 207 yards. The 30-year-old caught some flak for his suspect route-running, but that ultimately proved to be the product of a bum ankle, which was surgically repaired in March.
In a surprise turn of events, it seems like the Patriots are confident in Sanu getting healthy and producing in 2020 because his contract situation really makes you ponder why he’s still on the roster.
For starters, NE could have recouped $6.5 million in cap space by cutting Sanu. When you take the franchise’s limited financial flexibility into consideration — they have just $8.99 million at their disposal and had even less than before the settlements — it’s nothing short of befuddling to think that they didn’t jettison the Rutgers product.
Sure, the cap will reset prior to next season, but releasing Sanu to sign a wideout with more upside for 2020 just seems like the smarter move, no?
We mean no disrespect to the former third-round pick, but even he admitted that the 2019 season was his worst since his rookie campaign back in 2012. Truth be told, he’s probably surprised that the Patriots, who are normally quick to cut ties with expendable pieces, opted to retain him.
Whatever the case, the fact that Sanu is still on the team proves that New England has a ton of belief that he will bounce back season this year. We’ll know soon enough if that was the right call. He’ll have a clean slate to start with when he joins former division-rival Cam Newton.