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I was extremely shocked by the series of events that led to the departure of wide receiver Wes Welker from New England, and the Patriots' signing of Danny Amendola to replace him. Rarely do you see the Patriots make such a major blunder, but this certainly qualifies.
Let me go on record as saying that I don't believe Amendola is as good as Welker, as reliable or will be as productive in New England's offense. I think this was a major downgrade for the Patriots.
It's obvious that Bill Belichick and Welker had differing opinions as to the slot receiver's value on the open market, but with Tom Brady saving the team cap space in 2013 and 2014 by restructuring his contract, re-signing Welker should have been a no-brainer.
Instead, the Patriots opted to let Welker test his value. When he signed with rival Denver, New England immediately replaced him with Amendola, who, when healthy, is a nice player. Unfortunately for Amendola, the caveat of health is one that's come into play too often. He's only played in 12 games over the past two seasons.
Meanwhile, Welker has only missed three games in six seasons with the Patriots, and his rapport with Brady is unquestioned. Can Brady and Amendola replicate that chemistry? Perhaps, but it will take time, and Amendola will have to stay healthy in order to accomplish that goal.
I'm not saying Amendola can't succeed in New England. But this was the rare situation where Belichick and the Patriots made the outright wrong decision.