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Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Welcome back Deion
Last night, what had been whispered for days officially came through: former Super Bowl MVP Deion Branch is back with the Patriots.
The Seattle Seahawks basically dumped him (sound familiar Randy Moss?) for only a fourth-round draft pick in exchange.
Branch was drafted in 2002 by New England and in his four seasons with the Patriots, they won two Super Bowls while he proved himself to be a big time wide receiver that always shows up when the stakes are their highest.
Naturally, the local knuckle dragging Belichick sycophants love the move and I can't say I disagree with them. However, we have to keep in mind two things: 1) Branch is 31 and he has only played 16 games in a season once (2005, his last with the Pats) and 2) he wasn't even playing in Seattle anymore.
I will give him the benefit of the doubt since Seattle has been a mess the last few seasons and the fact that they paid him (and pictured him) as a No. 1 receiver is beyond laughable. Branch is the definition of a system guy and when he was with Tom Brady, he was teamed up with the perfect type of quarterback.
There's a reason Brady and Branch are BFFs and Brady reportedly texted him last week when he knew Moss was done in New England. The good news is that Branch doesn't have to be a savior (unlike Moss in Minnesota) and there's plenty of other weapons around him: Wes Welker, Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski, Brandon Tate, Julian Edelman, Danny Woodhead, etc. to ensure that he doesn't have to put up fantasy numbers right away.
Branch is a classy professional and he should be a good mentor for all the young talent on the Patriots. He is a key to the storied past but hopefully he still has something left to give to this team which can use anything he's got.