5 breakout stars to watch for New England Patriots in 2020

Bill Belichick, New England Patriots. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Bill Belichick, New England Patriots. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /
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It is transition time for the New England Patriots. What five players could emerge as standouts for Bill Belichick’s team this upcoming season?

In some ways, it’s been a typical offseason for the franchise based in Foxborough, Massachusetts…with a very noticeable exception. And there’s no reason to bury the lead here as 20-year quarterback Tom Brady has left the New England Patriots for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

As for the six-time Super Bowl champions, Bill Belichick’s team was uncharacteristically one-and-done in the playoffs this past season. It marked the first time since 2009 that the team did not reach the conference title game.

Still, the Pats have made a habit of producing stars regardless of where they came from or what round they were drafted. So what performers could emerge this year and enjoy big seasons for a team in transition?

5. WR N’Keal Harry

He was the 32nd overall pick in last April’s draft. But when it came to former Arizona State wide receiver N’Keal Harry, he didn’t get a lot of opportunities to make any kind of real impression. He played in only seven regular-season games and caught only half of the 24 throws directed his way.

The 12 grabs added up to only 105 yards and two scores. In the wild card loss to the Titans, Harry was targeted seven times and managed only two catches for 21 yards.

Now the second-year pro will be getting used to a new quarterback with Tom Brady moving on. Of course, he didn’t make his debut until Week 11 really never got acclimated to the offense. Look for the 6-foot-4, 225-pound specimen to be significantly more effective this fall.

Next: No. 4