Patriots WR snap counts (out of 57): Julian Edelman 51, Chris Hogan 32, Malcolm Mitchell 31, Danny Amendola 19.
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) October 24, 2016
It shouldn’t be surprising that Edelman led the Patriots receiving corps in snaps. He also “busted out” with 9 receptions (on 10 targets), so you would think there would be optimism. However that’s not the case as he mustered just 60 yards and didn’t find the end zone.
He’s clearly among the go to receivers on the team, as he was the only player targeted more than 5 times on a day LeGarrette Blount was given 24 carries. Despite the targets and the return of Tom Brady, though, the output simply hasn’t been there.
First his season stats:
He’s never been a big play machine, averaging 10.3 yards/catch for his career. However you really need to get significant volume to be able to post fantasy viable numbers, and with his YPC down to 8.7 this season it’s hard to get excited.
At 5’10″ and with the emergence of Martellus Bennett (though a non-factor on Sunday), it also shouldn’t be surprising that he has struggled to find the end zone. Could it change? Perhaps, but keep in mind he has just 21 total receiving TD for his career. That makes the 7 he scored last season scream of an aberration, doesn’t it?
Obviously with Brady back we would like to think that there’s upside, but it’s hard to expect. Like the majority of the Patriots skill position players, Edelman has fallen into the class of “untrustworthy” on a weekly basis. While dumping him would seem premature, considering him as nothing more than a WR4 makes sense.
There’s still value and upside, but until he shows it he should be firmly planted on your bench.