Patrick signed his exclusive rights tender with the Broncos on Tuesday, Aric DiLalla of the team's official site reports. An undrafted free agent in 2017, Patrick spent time with the Ravens, 49ers and Broncos that year before parlaying a reserve/future contract with the latter organization into his first spot on a 53-man roster last season. Injuries took their toll on the receiving corps as the campaign went on, eventually giving him a chance to produce down the stretch. Notably, he corralled 19 of his 30 targets for 242 yards across the last four games. The passing attack under Joe Flacco's direction will revolve around Emmanuel Sanders (once healthy from a torn Achilles) and second-year wideouts Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton. Assuming no more additions to the receivers room, Patrick could thrive in three-wide sets until Sanders is back in the fold.
The Broncos tendered Patrick on Thursday, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports. Patrick went from little-known undrafted free agent to special-teams contributor to promising young target all in the course of a few months. He finished particularly strong with 19 receptions and a team-high 242 yards during the final four games of 2018. Patrick figures to be prominent component of Denver's young core of the future featuring Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton. That future may come right away depending on whether or not veteran Emmanuel Sanders returns to form in 2019.
Patrick concluded 2018 having caught 23 of 41 passes for 315 yards and a touchdown. He added 17 yards on three carries and fumbled twice, losing one. With Denver drafting two receivers in each of the past two drafts, a youth movement was expected at wideout, but perhaps aside from 2018 second-round pick Courtland Sutton, none of them showed as much promise as Patrick, a 2017 undrafted free agent out of Utah. Patrick was primarily a special-teams contributor for most of the season, but came on strong during the season's final four games following the season-ending Achilles' injury to Emmanuel Sanders. Patrick averaged 4.75 catches and 60.5 yards off of 7.5 targets per game during the season's final quarter after tallying just four catches and 73 yards to that point. A healthy Sanders would certainly be a welcomed sight next season on a roster without many prominent targets, but it's not hard to imagine the future of Denver's passing game being built around two taller receivers (Patrick and Sutton) on the outside.
Patrick (knee) has returned to Sunday's game against the Chargers, Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic reports. Patrick briefly left the field during the second quarter of Sunday's season finale, then stormed out of halftime with a 21-yard reception. The 25-year-old returns to his role as the Broncos' No. 3 receiver.
Patrick is questionable to return to Sunday's game against the Chargers due to a knee injury, Mike Klis of 9News Denver reports. Patrick exited Sunday's season finale during the second quarter. As long as the 25-year-old remains sidelined, River Caracraft will slot in as Denver's No. 3 wideout.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3||09/22||@Green Bay Packers||26||24.75|
|5||10/06||@Los Angeles Chargers||7||18.44|
|7||10/18||Kansas City Chiefs||21||22.67|
|13||12/01||Los Angeles Chargers||7||18.44|
|15||12/15||@Kansas City Chiefs||21||22.67|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||41||23||315||1||15||13.70||36|