The Patriots passing game definitely hasn't been one of the team's strengths this year. Through two weeks this season, Tom Brady is averaging just 255.5 passing yards per game, which is his lowest total through two games since 2014.
To help jumpstart the Patriots passing game, the team made a somewhat surprising move on Monday when Browns' receiver Josh Gordon. Although you could argue that Gordon is currently the most talented member of the Patriots receiving group, Brady isn't ready to jump on the hype-train just yet.for
During an interview with Jim Gray on Westwood One Radio this week, the Patriots quarterback said he wants to practice with Gordon before he puts any expectations on his newest teammate.
"You know, I hate to make projections and expectations. That's not fair," Brady said Monday night, via NFL.com. "I've never met Josh personally, just like I hadn't met some of the guys that have come in the last couple weeks. So we'll see how it goes this week and hopefully he can work hard, put the team first and end up helping us in any role that he can find for himself on the team."
Brady had his first practice with Gordon on Wednesday.
According to Brady, the next few days are going to be pivotal, and that's because it's not easy to build up chemistry with a player who joins your team in the middle of the season.
"Any time you get someone in the middle of the season, there's obviously a lot of things that have happened that have got the team to a certain point that they weren't a part of," Brady said. "So you know, I'm not sure how many of those things matter, but you'd like to try to get up to speed as quickly as possible and it's really up to the individuals. ... You know all these things need to play themselves out. I'm not going to project anything. I'm just going to try to go be the positive, enthusiastic leader that I am and try to be a great quarterback and try to embrace whoever's on the team."
One other thing that Brady is going to need to work on with Gordon is building trust. Brady says he generally can trust any receiver on the field, which is good news for Gordon, and that's mainly because he doesn't have the best track record with trust. When the Browns announced they were going to reasons was due to a lack of trust., one of the reported
"I always think trust is whatever receiver is out there, you know, you tell them to run a certain route and they run it the way that you talked about it, the ball is thrown, it's caught, it's a positive play and then you do it again," Brady said. "If it's a flip of the coin and 50-50, sometimes it's right, sometimes it's wrong, I mean nobody can really depend on that. The coaches don't want to see that, the players don't want to see that. You want to know that the guys you're lining up next to that they got it. They've got their responsibility taken care of and that frees you up to think about what your responsibilities are. But if you're worried about this guy or that guy or this or that, you know, it just takes away from what your focus needs to be as an individual."
Fortunately for Gordon, it looks like he'll be in the perfect spot to start earning Brady's trust and that's because the Patriots have given the troubled receiver some a prime locker location.
Josh Gordon gets the locker next to Tom Brady.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) September 19, 2018
Although Gordon has been battling a hamstring injury, he was on the field for practice Wednesday and he's reportedly healthy enough to play on Sunday against the Lions if the Patriots need him. And yes, that means his trade is official, even if Bill Belichick refuses to .
"I'm not going to talk about players that are not actually, I would say, on our roster totally. So, when that happens, it happens, if it happens," Belichick said Wednesday. "There are terms that have to be met before the trade is finalized, and when those are completed, then we'll have a completed trade. And, until they're completed, then I'm not going to get into it."
Basically, it sounds like Gordon will likely play on Sunday unless the Patriots somehow haven't finalized his trade six days after trading for him.