Mac Jones had all sorts of fun at the Pro Bowl on Sunday, from hitting the Griddy to firing touchdown passes. On his one passing touchdown of the day, he placed a ball perfectly in the back of the end zone for Raiders receiver Hunter Renfrow.
While the TD may have come in an exhibition game, Jones-to-Renfrow could be a combination in Foxboro in the near future. Renfrow is entering the final year of his rookie deal with the Raiders in 2022, and is not eligible for a fifth-year option, so there’s a chance he reaches unrestricted free agency.
A fifth-round draft choice out of Clemson in 2019, Renfrow emerged as a cornerstone piece of the Las Vegas offense in his third season. He caught 103 passes, tied with Stefon Diggs for ninth in the NFL, for 1,038 yards and nine touchdowns to earn his first Pro Bowl nod.
Assuming the Patriots continue to run the same general offense in the post-Josh McDaniels era, Renfrow certainly fits the blueprint.
Rather than beat opponents with pure size or speed, the 5-foot-10 Renfrow excels in the slot with elite footwork and steady hands. His game has drawn comparison to notable Patriots slot receivers of the past like Wes Welker and Julian Edelman. This made him a common Patriots pick for draft prognosticators in 2019.
Renfrow would give Jones a reliable target over the middle of the field and, by extension, further open up the New England offense. A weapon like Renfrow would fill a major need while elevating the Patriots’ passing attack and possibly replicating aerial concepts from the Welker and Edelman eras.
In a recent interview, former Patriots offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia stressed the need for a capable slot receiver to boost the offensive production in Foxboro.
“Those are go-to guys,” Scarnecchia told NBC Sports Boston. “Just guys that keep the chains moving.”
Renfrow made 51 of his 103 catches for first downs in 2021. He could prove expensive in a year, if his production keeps going up under McDaniels. But if the Raiders can’t lock up their young slot star before he reaches free agency, there’s a good chance he’d draw interest in Foxboro.
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