Impossible expectations for Danny Amendola in 2013


The shoes were always too big to fill; nonetheless, New England needed more out of its new slot receiver.

There were clues that New England was looking to acquire Danny Amendola from the St. Louis Rams even before Wes Welker departed for Denver, suggesting that the team was expecting to make a transition at the slot position and had begun to plan accordingly.

The team had seen Amendola’s game tape and knew his injury history.

The sentiment heading into the season was that if Amendola could stay healthy (which, at the time, was considered a big “if”), he could be a younger, faster Welker with an immediate impact on the offense and a high ceiling for growth.

Amendola did stay healthier than expected, missing only four games, but he was not nearly as valuable to the offense as the team needed him to be.

That’s not entirely fair to Amendola. His regular season output came close to matching his best two seasons with St. Louis, and he averaged 4.5 receptions per game over the 12 games in which he played, with an impressive 11.7 average yards per reception.

But Amendola only recorded five or more receptions in four of those games, and 235 of his season-total 633 receiving yards came in two games—Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills and Week 15 against the Miami Dolphins—in each of which he recorded ten receptions.

By far, his most efficient game was the Week 9 matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, in which he gained 122 yards on just four receptions along with his season-long catch of 57 yards and a touchdown.

Amendola only caught two touchdowns all season, with his second coming against the Cleveland Browns in Week 14.

Amendola did tear his groin muscle completely off the bone in the second quarter of the Week 1 game yet still played for the second half of the game. He seems to have yet to return to full strength, and though his production fell off toward the end of the season, he continued to develop his relationship with Tom Brady, who was quick to praise Amendola and call his inaugural season with the team a success.

Amendola might do well to follow Julian Edelman’s lead and move next door to Brady in California so the three can play catch throughout the year—the strategy paid off phenomenally for Edelman.

Follow Shane Eisner on Twitter.

Read Tony Santorsa’s takeaways from the loss.

cover32 Shield b
Make sure you follow @cover32_NE and @cover32_NFL on Twitter for all the latest breaking news, columns, blogs and features from the Patriots and the entire NFL.

Previous articleCleveland Browns get answer from Denver Broncos OC Adam Gase
Next articleWhere are the St. Louis Rams in the way too early 2014 Power Rankings?
  • The Rams this year are doing really well. Bradford is doing prttey well this year. With Amendola out eith a hurt shoulder thats going to hurt us a lot. We also have a player on the team which I think can take us to the playoffs this year and thats the Leg! Zuerlein is a great adition to the team and in my opinion the best kicker in the NFL. Zuerlein has already broke two Rams record and the were the same record. H broke the records during the Seahawks game. Zuerlein if he stay with the Rams Im sure his pay will double on his next contract. Finally Zuerlein is the best adition to the team and is a great great great kicker!