Skip to content

Could Brandon LaFell be used like Aaron Hernandez in Pats’ offense?

Getty Images

Brandon LaFell is listed as a wide receiver in New England. But a report suggests he could see some time at tight end for the Patriots.

In a story published Friday, Ben Volin of the Boston Globe said to “watch out” for LaFell getting some work in the “‘Hernandez” role” in the New England offense. That would suggest LaFell might be used like ex-Patriot Aaron Hernandez, a receiving tight end who had the athleticism to be moved around in the formation.

The Patriots list LaFell at 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds. By contrast, Hernandez was one inch shorter and 35 pounds heavier, per his biography.

As Volin noted, the Patriots are not especially deep at tight end. They do, however, have quite a few options at wide receiver. More on LaFell’s role could be learned in training camp, and his weight could provide something of a clue. Some extra bulk would be helpful if regular tight end reps are to be part of his responsibilities.

Permalink 33 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Carolina Panthers, Home, New England Patriots, Rumor Mill
33 Responses to “Could Brandon LaFell be used like Aaron Hernandez in Pats’ offense?”
  1. heisthejuan says: Jun 20, 2014 1:21 PM

    I certainly think he could drop passes in big situations just as well as Hernandez did.

  2. dietrich43 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:24 PM

    I would think LaFell wouldn’t like to be compared to Hernandez in anyway.

  3. phluffyclouds says: Jun 20, 2014 1:26 PM

    Lol LaFail

  4. dalcow4 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:29 PM

    Man that team is thin. If it wasn’t for Brady they’d be 4-12 every year.

  5. politicallyincorrect says: Jun 20, 2014 1:29 PM

    let’s hope he is not used like I hope Hernandez is used this year… at least not as often

  6. htagsports says: Jun 20, 2014 1:33 PM

    Watch his Twitter list him as an “Offensive Weapon” as opposed to WR or TE…I bet a bunch of players have already addressed that.

  7. capspats says: Jun 20, 2014 1:36 PM

    Hernandez is only 6-1?

  8. 6ball says: Jun 20, 2014 1:46 PM


    In the Hernandez role Lafell would still be a match up problem for a safety or a cornerback. He’s also an excellent blocker.

  9. thestrategyexpert says: Jun 20, 2014 1:51 PM

    It wouldn’t be the same as like it was with Hernandez without a 5-year huge money contract extension first.

  10. tjacks7 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:51 PM

    No cause he can’t catch.

  11. scrp2 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:51 PM

    Anything to avoid Bob Kraft getting out the checkbook and getting some real players.

  12. qdog112 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:53 PM

    I think it’s a good idea for his skill set. He has good run after the catch production and can go across the middle and underneath coverages.

    It’ll be interesting to see how it works.

  13. rolltide510 says: Jun 20, 2014 1:54 PM

    Gosh, it’s almost like if you just call the guys you line up as receivers tight ends, they magically become tight ends and not just big slot receivers.

  14. flapjackdaddy says: Jun 20, 2014 2:08 PM

    He is an excellent blocker — as a WR — where he’s not asked to block a DE…

  15. Patskrieg dot com says: Jun 20, 2014 2:13 PM

    Could LaFell get cut during training camp and never be heard from again?

    You bet.

  16. uglydingo says: Jun 20, 2014 2:16 PM

    The window is closing for Tom Brady and it is interesting that a Carolina Panther reject is now seen as the key weapon.
    LaFell better be able to run really precise routes or he will incur the wrath of Grumpy Tommy.
    Chad Ochocinco 2.0

  17. datageek94 says: Jun 20, 2014 2:38 PM

    “Man that team is thin. If it wasn’t for Brady they’d be 4-12 every year.”

    Even with Brady, they could very well be 4-12 every year if they’d had any competitive teams in their division for the past decade.

  18. joshmac982 says: Jun 20, 2014 2:42 PM

    The fact that Brandon Lafell is potentially goig to play a big role in the pats offense should tell you everything you need to know about the supporting cast they have built around Brady

  19. pats777 says: Jun 20, 2014 2:48 PM

    James Develin has also been taking snaps in the H-Back position this Spring. Waiting for the debut of the 4 TE set.

  20. patsbrat says: Jun 20, 2014 3:09 PM

    I don’t know LaFell’s contract situation, but in a few years this could develop into the mirror image of the Graham controversy.

    TE plays like WR and should be paid WR tag money, so what happens when WR plays like TE, does he get TE tag money?

  21. rjbell4 says: Jun 20, 2014 3:17 PM

    “Man that team is thin. If it wasn’t for Brady they’d be 4-12 every year.”

    You mean like in 2008, when Brady went down in the first series of the season, then the team went 11-5, and tied for the best record in the division, and missed the playoffs based on a tie breaker that values the in-conference win-loss record more than the out-of-conference record, becoming the only team since the 1985 Broncos to finish 11-5 and not make the playoffs?

  22. funpatsmon777 says: Jun 20, 2014 3:33 PM


  23. mattwalshvideo says: Jun 20, 2014 3:46 PM

    Will Belicheat finance a safe house for LaFell too?

  24. ncphinsfan says: Jun 20, 2014 7:08 PM


    Yes, exactly with no Brady the Dolphins won the AFCE. Enjoy it while it lasts. Our run was good for 30+ years, yours will be about a third of that.

    Don’t fool yourselves about Brady playing into his 40’s. We all said that about Marino and he went from Great to Pick 6’s in less than 2 years. Brady is already on that decline. Not Hating, just a fact.

    As for LaFell, the difference is he is a castoff that can’t find a team, has never blocked a DE or OLB and most important… can’t Catch when relied on or else he would have had a Contract in Charlotte!

  25. stabb4444 says: Jun 20, 2014 7:29 PM

    “Man that team is thin. If it wasn’t for Brady they’d be 4-12 every year.”
    That’s so funny that this has become the no reason Brady has the best all-time winning percentage in NFL history! Never mind he beat Drew Brees, Peyton Manning (regular season), Andrew Luck, etc w/a cast of characters who had 3 WRs in the top 10 in both drops and drop % – my pt is he again was throwing nobody…ACCEPT for the 7 games Gronk played and all the sudden for a 7 wk period TB12 had the HIGHEST QB rating in the league, HIGHEST completion % in the league, THREW for the most yards in the league (yes more than Manning during those 7 wks), and WAS ON PACE, prorated over a whole season, to throw for 50 TD passes!!! So you add 1 elite receiver w/size and I guess Brady’s not so bad huh?!?! By the way, during Brady’s career, he has thrown to exactly 1 WR w/any size in Moss for 2 seasons…what happened? Mr Brady threw for 50 TDs and and undefeated regular season (actually 18-0 until SB) then his second season he becomes the ONLY UNANIMOUS MVP in NFL history. It’s scary to think about what the guy could’ve done had he not had to consistently adjust to an ever changing group of mini-me’s & TEs -lol!

  26. phluffyclouds says: Jun 20, 2014 7:46 PM

    Everyone talking about how Carolina didn’t add any WRs is nothing compared to what the Pats have to work with.

    LaFell was dead weight in Carolina and now he’s with NE and it’s Carolina making the bad moves?

    Can not wait to watch the Panthers surprise the NFL again in 2014!

  27. stabb4444 says: Jun 20, 2014 8:04 PM

    On the decline “rejbell4”?? A fact…how’s that my friend? Do I have to explain he had more comeback wins than any NFL QB in the league last year? Or do I need to go into the fact that he was the best QB in the league statistically over the 7 week period he had a legit receiving option in Gronk? Because that’s a fact…JACK! I mean damn, dude is throwing to scramble brains Austin Collie (who don’t get me wrong, is tough as nails…but a bit past his prime), Danny Amendola- a 5’9 WR who hasn’t ever stayed healthy throughout his career, Edelman- a 5’10 WR who was a 4 yr college QB at Kent St anyone could’ve had (including your ‘Phins) as FA 2 yrs ago, and finally two WRs in Dobson and Thompkins who both finished in the top 10 in drops & drop %…
    Huge drop off…SUUUURE!

  28. jolink653 says: Jun 20, 2014 8:49 PM

    I was hoping Mark Harrison would be put into that role, but obviously that didn’t happen. Would be interesting to see Lafell being played as a TE as his size would create a lot of matchup issues for other teams

  29. funpatsmon777 says: Jun 20, 2014 9:20 PM

    thank you stabb4444..brady is not declining the talent at w/r and tight end has declined and changed yearly not been healthy,last year for sure gronk i love him but he is a glass house!!!! go get andre johnson give the texans groppalo or mallett and amendola to clear some cap space then will see how much brady has not declined ..war brady..war patriots!!!!!!!

  30. revren10 says: Jun 22, 2014 3:13 PM

    Pats need to sign jason babin to add more talent to the D-Line. Lafell will produce but not to the level of Hernandez if they play him at tightend

  31. dmc1542 says: Jun 22, 2014 8:06 PM

    I’d rather see him in the David Givens role and Dustin Keller in the AH role

  32. dmc1542 says: Jun 22, 2014 8:10 PM

    Stab4444- preach brother!

  33. councilofargos says: Jun 26, 2014 5:28 AM

    man some of these comments are brutal. Kraft did spend the money this offeseason there is $10 million in dead money because of Hernandez. I feel if a player is in prison for any reason he should count against the cap, what happened to for the better interest of the league. New England bought the best corner they could in Revis, Sherman may be better but its a really short list. Have Browner on the other side. I love what they did in the oft season so the only money they spent on offense was lafell. unlike the Dallas and Atlanta if you want to talk about Mr cheaps in New england I believe Bill calls the shots.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!