While Bill Belichick has had plenty of success with the New England Patriots, taking wide receivers in the NFL Draft hasn’t necessarily been his specialty. However, the Patriots are hoping the 2023 NFL Draft will be different when it comes to WR.
New England has officially signed wide receiver Kayshon Boutte, via Mike Reiss of ESPN. He will receive a four-year, $4.027 million deal. He was the first prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft class to sign with the Patriots.
That Patriots selected Boutte in the sixth round with the No. 187 overall pick. He joins New England after spending three years at LSU, appearing in 29 games. Boutte caught 131 passes for 1,782 yards and 16 touchdowns.
Despite being selected in the sixth round, Boutte might have an opportunity to make an immediate impact. Outside of JuJu Smith-Schuster, New England is devoid of playmakers. Boutte could break out and earn a role next to Smith-Schuster. Overall, the Patriots are just hoping Boutte is better than their NFL Draft wide receivers of the past.
Dating back to 2012, New England has taken receivers such as Aaron Dobson, N’Keal Harry and Malcom Mitchell. All three were drafted in higher rounds than Boutte. All three also never stayed on the Patriots’ roster for more than three years.
In Kayshon Boutte, Bill Belichick has another opportunity to find a standout wide receiver in the NFL Draft. While it hasn’t worked out in the past, Boutte can be different. As the Patriots and Belichick wait to find out, New England can at least be assured that Boutte is officially under contract.