Did the New England Patriots do enough this offseason to improve on last season's 10-7 campaign? The Patriots made a splash with a re-imagined offensive coaching staff, some key veteran additions via free agency, and a rookie class which features a controversial first-round draft choice.
However, the team still has some work to do, especially considering how each AFC East team has seemingly improved this offseason.
There is a big question mark on the offensive line. The 26-year-old Isaiah Wynn is entering the final year of his rookie deal and did not attend OTAs. A first-round pick in 2018, Wynn has been the Patriots’ starting left tackle for the last three seasons after missing his rookie year due to injury.
And extending Wynn's contract is the most "pressing move'' for the Patriots, according to Bleacher Report.
"I ain't worried about no contract right now," Wynn told reporters in June. "I'm focused on being the best player I can be for the team, so we can move forward to the season. I'm not worried about any of that right now. That will come when it comes."
"It might not come,'' B/R writes, "and the Patriots would be making a mistake if so.
Yes, Wynn's versatility make him a valuable part of the team's foundation. However, in his first full season in 2021, Wynn allowed six sacks and 28 pressures while committing nine penalties, which tied for the seventh-most among all offensive lineman.
We would argue there is a more pressing question for the Patriots, who are tied with Miami for the second-best odds (+450) to win the AFC East. New England’s offensive prognosis is largely dependent on second-year quarterback Mac Jones' progression without former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
Perhaps the biggest question surrounding the Patriots fate in 2022 is the identity of the offensive play-caller. With the departure of McDaniels, the play calling duties are expected to be placed in the hands of both Joe Judge or Matt Patricia — with Patricia reportedly a bit of the lead in getting the job.
It's crucial for Jones to have a dependable offensive line and there are questions about Wynn possibly moving from left to right tackle and Cole Strange’s jump from Chattanooga to the NFL ... However the uncertainty with play-calling as it relates to Mac Jones' jump forward seems to be the most pressing issue.