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New England Patriots continue NFL free agent spending spree, add two wide receivers

Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Nelson Agholor (15) runs the ball for a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins during the second half at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots are not going to stop. The New England Patriots can’t stop. On Day 1 of the NFL free agent tampering period, Bill Belichick and Co. continue to make noise and spend money at a clip we’ve never seen from the organization before.

It started with New England adding stud tight end Jonnu Smith and Pro Bowl pass rusher Matt Judon, spending a combined $106 million in total cash.

Coming off their first losing season since 2000, the Patriots were in nowhere done. They opted to add two big-name wide receivers to help out whoever might be under center when Week 1 of the 2021 NFL season comes calling.

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New England Patriots sign Nelson Agholor

New England Patriots sign Nelson Agholor
Dec 26, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Nelson Agholor (15) is defended by Miami Dolphins cornerback Byron Jones (24) on an 85-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter at Allegiant Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Raiders 26-25. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, New England inked this former Philadelphia Eagles first-round pick to a two-year, $26 million contract after he spent the 2020 season with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Agholor, 27, was seen as somewhat of an enigmatic figure with Philadelphia during a five-year career that saw him record a combined 224 receptions for 2,515 yards and 18 touchdowns. He fell into then-head coach Doug Pederson’s doghouse back in 2019, recording just 39 receptions.

However, the USC product turned it around big time under Jon Gruden with the Raiders this past season. In fact, Agholor put up a career-best performance catching passes from Derek Carr. He tallied 46 receptions for 896 yards, averaging a robust 18.7 yards per catch while scoring eight touchdowns.

Given his contract, Agholor figures to be the Patriots’ primary slot receiver this coming season. Whether it’s catching passes from Cam Newton or someone else remains to be seen.

Read More: Top 50 NFL free agents of 2021

New England Patriots add Kendrick Bourne in free agency

New England Patriots sign Kendrick Bourne
Sep 20, 2020; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Kendrick Bourne (84) attempts to make a catch as New York Jets cornerback Blessuan Austin (31) defends during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

As noted above, the Patriots were not done there. They opted to double down at wide receiver on this former undrafted free agent from Eastern Washington by handing him a three-year, $22.5 million contract to pry the receiver away from the San Francisco 49ers.

Bourne has morphed into a decent option after being undrafted back in 2017. This past season saw the small-school product put up career highs in receptions (49) and yards (667) while catching an eye-opening 66.2% of his passes.

It goes without saying that the Patriots knew they needed to upgrade their skill positions heading into Day 1 of the NFL free agent tampering period.

Spending a total amount of nearly $100 million on three players was seemingly a high price to pay. However, we must find out the details of the contracts before drawing a final conclusion.

What we do know is that the New England Patriots offense is much better on Monday than it was last season. That’s a win for head coach Bill Belichick and Co.

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