The Patriots got an early jump on adding to their team Thursday morning, reportedly adding veteran receiver Marqise Lee per a report from Adam Schefter. Though the first round of the draft doesn't start until tonight, New England is already in team building mode, setting the stage for what should be an exciting weekend.
A 2014 second-round pick, Lee had 119 catches over the course of the 2016 and 2017 seasons with the Jaguars before missing the 2018 season with a major knee injury and ending up on IR with a shoulder injury in 2019 after only six games.He had four catches for 41 yards against the Patriots in the 2017 AFC Championship.
Lee has fought injuries for much of his career dating back to college, but when he's healthy offers a dynamic range of talents and smarts to make an impact. He was just finding his stride with the Jags before the setbacks of the last two seasons.
This is a classic move by the Patriots, buying low on a veteran coming off of two injury-shortened seasons. If Lee can get and stay healthy, he'll instantly improve a receiving corps that needed reinforcements. But on a one-year deal, the risk to the Pats is minimal and at the very least he'll provide competition for the young receivers on their roster who will be needed to make a jump in their second year.
With a loaded receiver class, this is likely not the last move the Patriots make at the position over the next few days, but it's one that provides them with some needed veteran depth with potential to give the team a playmaking boost.