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Patriots Cut D’Eriq King; Experiment Ends Before it Begins

Despite generating hype from Patriots fans and media, D’Eriq King’s tenure with the team is over.

Admit it — we’re all desperate to find the next Julian Edelman. 

As an undrafted free agent following this year’s NFL draft, D’Eriq King quickly emerged as a potential heir to a New England Patriots line of quarterback-turned-receivers including Edelman and current receiver Jakobi Meyers

Patriots WR Julian Edelman
Julian Edelman
Jakobi Meyers

Despite the hype surrounding King’s signing, the fantasy has come to a screeching halt. Just one week after being signed by the Patriots, King was cut. With New England’s OTAs start in early June, King’s dismissal comes as a relative surprise.

In college, King played quarterback with some upside as a gadget player who could both run and receive. At 5-9 and 196 pounds, this versatility made King seem like a promising option for the Patriots offense in creating unique play designs.

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In his first season for Miami in 2020, King was able to pass for 2,686 yards and 23 touchdowns at a completion rate of 64.1 percent. Despite some promise as a passer and prospect heading into the 2021 season, his time was cut short by a shoulder injury that required him to miss all but three games in the season. 

In addition, King’s production on the ground led to 538 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns in 2020.

Julian Edelman to be sidelined for about 3 weeks because of thumb injury
Patriots WR Jakobi Meyers

 Despite showing all the physical tools required for a successful gadget player in the NFL, King’s upside as a passer seem limited when accounting for his limited ability to progress through reads and his inconsistent accuracy.

However, with King being cut so early on in the offseason, it’s difficult to speculate whether he will be brought on the team again later in the summer. Regardless, one thing remains certain: the search for the next Edelman continues.