Woods could add deep threat to Patriots

Woods could add deep threat to Patriots
February 22, 2013, 6:45 pm
Share This Post

INDIANAPOLIS, IN -- Who will be a Patriots receiver in 2013?

It's actually a tricky question. Brandon Lloyd and Kamar Aiken are the only members of last year's group who are under contract for the upcoming season; Wes Welker, Julian Edelman, and Deion Branch are all free agents. Though Lloyd had a solid 2012 (74 catches for 911 yards and four touchdowns), New England could use a guy who can stretch its generally short-to-intermediate passing game.

There's a lot to like about USC receiver Robert Woods.

The 6-0, 190-pounder had 114 catches for 1,622 yards and 25 touchdowns in his third and final season at Southern California. His film shows an excellent route runner who often wins 1-on-1 battles, fights for the ball in the air, and gets in and out of breaks quickly.

"My high school coach always told me, 'One-two,' which is, at the top of your routes, get out in two steps," he explained at the NFL combine. "In high school that seemed impossible -- we were taking three or four steps. But in my head I still think, 'one-two' and that allows me to get out of my breaks a lot quicker."

Woods told CSNNE.com he will meet with the Patriots either Friday night or Saturday.

They aren't his only dance partner this week.

Asked if he's yet met with any NFL teams, Woods happily rattled off the names on his card.  

"I sat in a room with the Bills and there was about 10 coaches in there. One coach put on film, grilled me on some plays, some plays he liked. Whereas I went into the 49ers room and just Coach [Jim] Harbaugh was in there. I also sat in with the Raiders and had a lot more board work, sitting with a previous coach of mine, [former USC receivers coach Ted Gilmore]. Each coach and each team meeting has been different so far."

Woods tacked on the Texans and Vikings as well.

NFL.com projects Houston will draft the receiver at No. 27 -- two picks ahead of the Patriots. They should be happy if he falls. Though New England hasn't drafted a first-round receiver since 1996, free agency could add some urgency.

And Woods could be a fit.

"I just want to be a big impact to the team. Whether it's short passes, deep passes, or just a few catches for a first down. I always enjoy playing."