Wednesday was a busy day for the New England Patriots.
The team was involved in a number of moves, and one was to cut a tight end from their practice team and replace him with another.
The Patriots fired former Buffalo Bills TE Jalen Wydermyer and former Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver-turned-tight end Scotty Washington, per Pro Football Network’s Aaron Wilson.
The Patriots seem to love those larger wide receivers that can double as tight ends. It’s what Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez were – in reverse order. It’s what the Patriots were trying to make of N’Keal Harry before trading him to the Chicago Bears for a bag of old cleats (aka a seventh-round pick). It’s partly what Jonnu Smith is trying to be, and that’s how Lil’Jordan Humphrey surpasses Kendrick Bourne with this year’s team.
Washington is an interesting prospect. He had been playing WR exclusively when he came out of Wake Forest, but thanks to his 6ft 4in frame and currently listed 247lb weight, Washington looks like a potentially monstrous menace and a redzone matchup problem .
He hasn’t yet had a chance to show what he can do in a regular-season game, but the 26-year-old Washington DC native has some intriguing advantages if he makes quick progress.
Washington’s red zone prowess was showcased in his senior year of college with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. In eight games, Washington made 35 receptions for 607 yards and 7 TDs. As a sophomore, Washington had 45 catches for 711 yards and 3 TDs.
The Demon Deacons played bowl games during Washington’s four active years with the programs. However, quarterback play was somewhat inconsistent with John Wolford and Jamie Newman as signal callers.
Could Washington eventually become the kind of late bloomer who makes a bigger impression in the NFL than in college? The Patriots are hoping for that, and they could use some luck at wide receiver and tight end positions.
Much has been written about the team’s failure to design a quality wide receiver. The two tight ends the Patriots drafted in 2019 weren’t much better. Both Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene were fired this offseason. Asiasi ended up on the Bengals’ practice team while Keene ended up on the Philadelphia Eagles’ practice team.
In addition to the tight-end swap, the Patriots lost veteran cornerback Terrence Mitchell when the Tennessee Titans signed the 30-year-old from the New England practice team.
During training camp, Mitchell looked like a lock to make the 53-man roster at one point. However, Jonathon Jones’ health and the emergence of Jack Jones as a cover guy, along with Myles Bryant’s return skills, helped give them an advantage over Mitchell.
New England had put him in the training squad, but it was only two weeks before a CB-hungry squad snapped up Mitchell.
The Patriots also brought back kicker Tristan Vizcaino to replace Mitchell on the practice team, according to his management group Black Label Sports.
Last but not least, the Patriots traded offensive tackle Justin Herron and a seventh-round pick in 2024 to the Las Vegas Raiders for a sixth-rounder in 2024.