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Patriots Pick Up Isaiah Wynn’s Option

The New England Patriots announced today a couple of roster moves. According to Ian Rapoport, the team would be picking up the fifth-year option on offensive lineman, Isaiah Wynn’s contract. While also likely to decline to pick up running back Sony Michel’s option. Moves that should not come as a surprise to many. 

Isaiah Wynn

Wynn’s time with the Patriots has been the complete opposite of expectations. The Patriots selected him with the 23rd overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. He has been injury prone since the beginning of his career. Wynn’s rookie season was cut too quickly as he tore his Achilles in the second preseason game. When he returned for the 2019 season, he looked eager and ready to work. Unfortunately, he endured a turf toe injury that sidelined him on the injured reserve for half of the season. Things looked promising for Wynn in the 2020 season. He started every game leading up to yet another injury in Week 11. 

Wynn’s production on the field is what makes this a good option pick-up. In his 10 games in 2020, he managed to recover a fumble and only recorded 1 penalty. Picking up Wynn’s option means he will remain in New England through the 2022 season. Where he’ll earn a nice $10.4 million, guaranteed. Pro Football Focus has him graded as the #1 graded offensive tackle from the 2018 NFL Draft. 

Sony Michel

In Rapoport’s tweet above, he also mentioned the likelihood of the Patriots declining to pick up Michel’s option. This really isn’t much of a surprise to Patriots fans. Michel opened the 2020 season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. He was activated from the PUP list before the season was underway. Michel missed most of October when he injured his quad and was placed on the injured reserve, then was placed on the COVID-19 list. He was activated off the IR at the end of November. 

Michel hit a wall with his on-field production, especially this past season. In 2019, he saw snaps in all 16 games and started 13. However, after New England lost James Develin to a neck injury, his production plateaued. Michel averaged under 4 yards per attempt in 2019. He played in 9 games in 2020 but only started 6. There was an improvement in yards per attempt, up to 5.7. However, he saw a significant decrease in snaps, only having 79 rush attempts compared to 247 attempts in 2019.

Unfortunately for Michel, the Patriots re-signed James White and drafted Rhamondre Stevenson in the fourth round of this year’s NFL Draft. Leaving little room within the running backs for Michel.

Final Thoughts

If Wynn’s body can keep him on the field, I love this move by New England. I like what I see from Wynn when he’s healthy. He didn’t seem to miss a beat with line jumbling. Especially when moved from left tackle to left guard in Week 6 last season.

The addition of Rhamondre Stevenson in the fourth round told all about Sony Michel’s future. There’s little wiggle room within the running backs. With Michel’s overall average yards being only 4.3, he will need to work his tail off to earn more time in New England as he isn’t guaranteed with the Patriots past the 2021 season.

-Jess Donahue (@jldx392)

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