What the Patriots said about a reported DeAndre Hopkins visit

"I'm a fan of D-Hop. It would be cool."

DeAndre Hopkins will reportedly visit the Patriots next week. Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

DeAndre Hopkins is coming to Foxborough for a visit next week, according to multiple reports. NFL Network reported the visit first, and ESPN’s Mike Reiss confirmed it.

The Patriots have been mentioned among the teams interested in Hopkins for months now.

Receiver Kendrick Bourne said he’d be open to Hopkins joining New England’s receiver room.

“I’m a fan of D-Hop. It would be cool,” receiver Kendrick Bourne said after practice on Friday. “I don’t know the gist of what’s going on, but he is a great player. Anything that would help us win, I’m with.”

Defensive back Adrian Phillips shrugged his shoulders and smiled when asked if he knew about Hopkins’s visit, saying “I can’t really talk about that, y’all are tying to get me.”


But Phillips has played against Hopkins in the past. The first thing that came to mind about what Hopkins can bring to an offense was Hopkins’s “hands.”

“He catches everything,” Phillips said. “His whole highlight reel is one-handers and stuff like that. He’s a physical guy and he’s able to turn it on at any moment.”

The Patriots signed Juju Smith-Schuster during the offseason, adding him to a receiving corps that includes Bourne, DeVante Parker, and Tyquan Thornton. New England lost Jakobi Meyers to Las Vegas in free agency but drafted a pair of receivers in Kayshon Boutte and Demario Douglas.

But they could still use an established No. 1 option at receiver. When asked how players such as Hopkins or Davante Adams affect a defense, Phillips said, “It’s the route running. The hardest thing about receivers is being able to cover them. The quarterback is not going to throw the ball to them if they’re not open. So, when you’ve got guys who are able to run routes and get open it makes it that much harder.”

“And then when you add their ability to catch the ball with their eyes closed, it adds a whole other avenue to it,” Phillips continued. “When you’re going against guys like that, it makes the game plan harder and you really have to hone in because sometimes when you do have them covered, they’re still able to make a play.”


Hopkins missed eight of Arizona’s 17 games last season, including a six-game suspension for a violation of the league’s PED policy. He was still able to haul in 64 catches for 717 yards and three touchdowns during his limited action.

The Cardinals released him last month. Patriots coach Bill Belichick said Hopkins is “one of the best” receivers he’s ever coached against before the Patriots played Arizona last December.

“He’s a very smart football player, very savvy,” Belichick said at the time. “But his ball skills are at the very elite level with guys that I’ve seen in this league. He’s up there with whoever the top guys are, the Cris Carters of the world and guys like that.”


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