The New England Patriots are continuing to add depth to their receiving corps. According to Jim Wyatt of the Nashville Tennessean, the team has agreed to terms on a two year contract with former Tennessee Titans wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins.
Hawkins, 26, was a fourth round pick of the Titans back in 2008 after playing his collegiate career at California. Hawkins was slowed by an ankle injury in 2012, the first year of a three year, $7.2 million deal that he signed following a 47 catch 2011 season. As Wyatt wrote in his report, Hawkins was scheduled to make $1.9 million in 2013, and the Titans deemed that too rich. The team released the receiver last week.
Hawkins, at 5’11” and 194 lbs, has average size and good quickness, and average speed for the position. ESPN Scouts, Inc analyzed his game following his breakout 2011 season:
He is used as a No. 3 receiver, which seems to be a good fit as he is just not dynamic enough to split out wide and threaten the secondary down the boundary or to stretch the secondary down the seam. He can drop his hips to get in and out of his breaks with a good burst but has a tendency to round things off too often. He is not real strong or confident when going up for the ball in a crowd and often ends up going to the ground to catch low throws.
While Hawkins is unlikely to land himself on top of the Patriots’ depth chart, this move is a nice depth signing that gives the Patriots another good body for what figures to be the team’s most competitive training camp battle. While he is far from a guarantee for a roster spot, he has the opportunity to compete with the likes of Donald Jones and Michael Jenkins for a spot as a number four or five receiver.