There always seems to be a shocker over Labor Day weekend and the reported trade of Jacoby Brissett to the Colts for wide receiver Phillip Dorsett sure fits the bill.
The Patriots are trading QB Jacoby Brissett to the Colts for WR Phillip Dorsett, league source tells ESPN.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) September 2, 2017
There’s a lot to unpack here. First, let’s start with Brissett who just had the best game of his pro career against the Giants on Thursday night. All signs seem clear now that the Patriots intend on keeping Jimmy Garoppolo, perhaps even past this season when his contract expires. Would they cut a promising player like Brissett loose if they planned on letting Garoppolo walk (or franchise-then-trade him) next season? Probably not. Or at the very least they see another two good years from Brady, which of course they do.
Until now Dorsett had been a punchline in Patriots nation because the Colts took him when they could’ve had Malcom Brown, a player their team needed much more urgently. Now Dorsett and Brown are united on the same team and the Colts got an able backup to Andrew Luck who could possibly see starting action before Luck returns from injury.
The main question that pops to our mind is can Dorsett replace what the Patriots lost in Julian Edelman (quick open receiver) and Cyrus Jones (punt returner)? Dorsett did return punts in college but returned just two punts, two years ago for a grand total of one yard. So don’t hold you breath on the punt return part. But he’s certainly fast enough to get open quickly.
Last year he played 15 games, tallying 33 catches for 528 yards and two touchdowns. The Colts’ offensive line struggles fed into Dorsett’s lack of action as did injuries in his first two years.
No question, Dorsett is another speed burner. He ran a 4.33 40 at the combine, but more importantly he was a top performer in the Pats-fave three-cone drill with a time of 6.70 seconds. That’s promising when looking at getting open quickly. However there are questions of how well he can pick up a playbook. That might be the biggest question of all with this move — yes he’s fast and can get open quick, but can he get open quick where Brady wants him to be without a training camp?
Here’s what scouts had to say when Dorsett was coming out:
Dorsett is an ascending prospect who has averaged more than 25 yards per catch since 2012. He can challenge teams vertically inside or outside and he has home-run potential after the catch as a slot receiver. With smaller wide receivers like T.Y. Hilton and Antonio Brown proving that small and fast can win in the NFL, Dorsett should be coveted by more than one team and has the potential to turn into a star in the NFL.
It’s pretty amazing how explosive this Patriots offense could be downfield this year. On paper, it’s not easy to see why the Patriots thought he was the right guy to bring in right now. But what’s undeniable is this is the fastest Patriots offense ever and could easily be the explosive team in the league. For all their dominance over the past decade-and-a-half there’s just never been this kind of explosive speed. Between Dorsett, Cooks and Hogan it seems like an impossible task for defenses to protect themselves downfield every snap.
Get ready for the bombs away offense, because it sure looks like that’s the direction things are heading this year.