Ben Watson’s PED suspension will keep Patriots thin at tight end for September

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When tight end Benjamin Watson unretired earlier this month and joined the Patriots, his return to the place where his NFL career began in 2004 made plenty of sense, given the team’s needs at the position in the aftermath of the retirement of tight end Rob Gronkowski. The news of Watson’s PED suspension brings those needs back into focus, at least for the month of September.

Watson will be gone for the first four weeks of the regular season, which necessarily will leave the Patriots thin at the tight end position for the initial 25 percent of the campaign.

Barring a trade or a free-agent acquisition, Austin Seferian-Jenkins will presumably be the top tight end when Week One rolls around. The other tight ends currently on the roster include Ryan Izzo, Matt LaCosse, Stephen Anderson, and Andrew Beck.

Rumors had been circulating of a possible trade for Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph. Watson’s suspension could dust off the chatter of a deal being made with Minnesota. A deal with another team for a tight end also could be possible, given that the Patriots will have to embark on a one-month stretch that features the Steelers, at the Dolphins, Jets, and at the Bills, without a guy who signed with the team less than a month ago.

What they’ll do remains to be seen. Because it’s the Patriots, most will assume that they have a plan and that the plan will work. Because they usually do, and it usually does.

14 responses to “Ben Watson’s PED suspension will keep Patriots thin at tight end for September

  1. The Patriots signed him knowing that he was facing the suspension. He told all teams that were interested in him that he was suspended. This isn’t some news that will send the Patriots racing to the trade wires. If they wanted anyone else they would have gotten them before just as much now.

  2. Watson told them about it before signing on 9th May, so it hasn’t thrown them a curve-ball. Of the others, it’ll almost certainly be Seferian-Jenkins (if healthy), Lacosse (he signed a 2yr deal in March), and Beck (who in May just became Pats highest paid undrafted FA). Izzo & Anderson are backups fighting for a PS spot. Gronk’s gone but Pats aren’t overly thin at TE.

  3. That’ll just get the trolls all fired up, claiming the Patriots are finished, only to have to eat their words later in the season. Maybe this year they’ll have a crow-eating contest.

  4. Well Brady was gone in September and so was Edelman. It’s not how you start. A 38 year old guy missing the first four games isn’t the end of the world. It’s all about January and the first sunday of February in Foxboro…

  5. Since the Patriots win a Super Bowl when a player gets suspended the first four games of a season (Brandon Browner 2014, Tom Brady 2016, Julian Edelman 2018) everyone can now happily conclude the league is helping them win, yet again, in 2019.

  6. Anytime you lose a player like Gronk there would be a perception that the tight end position would be thin. Out of the players listed above there are 2 tight ends with starting experience and one that proved to be a promising prospect before being put on IR for the season last year. The absence of Watson will allow these players a greater opportunity to prove themselves in the Patriots system. All is good in Foxboro.

  7. No reason to be worried, the sleeper could be Beck, Belichick knew what he was getting with the signing amount to this rookie.he’s expecting big things and he will make the team….the others Izzy & Anderson gone/bye/bye

  8. 5 tightends on the roster with Watson out without counting devs who is a te in a pinch I think it’s a deep position.

  9. I finally figured out who all these Patriots haters are, they are not fans of other teams. They are actually the coaches of other teams. Coaches, in order to stop a team, need to know the identity of that team. Are you a pass heavy/run heavy team.. BB SAYS YES.. can you stop the run /pass… Again yes. Do you blitz/not blitz.. Yes.. What are you they ask.. BB answers..we are on to Cincinnati.

  10. Go Bruins… I work (not) on the parade route. Baby needs a new pair of shoes(not), sounds good, still wears the shoes from the last New England parade. Deal with it haters.
    Haters..need extra cash? Don’t get scammed with “get rich quick” adds… Apply on for jobs to clean banners, trophies and rings… Xmas is fast approaching.

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