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DeMario Douglas Projected as a Breakout Star in 2024



New England Patriots wide receiver DeMario Douglas

Every year the NFL features breakout stars who seemingly come out of nowhere to have an enormous impact. The Los Angeles Rams selected Puka Nacua in the fifth round (No. 177 overall) of the 2023 NFL Draft. He broke the rookie records for receptions (105) and receiving yards (1,486) in a season. Dallas Cowboys cornerback DeRon Bland went from reserve cornerback to returning five interceptions for touchdowns and earning first-team All-Pro honors. Who will be the 2024 breakout starts in the NFL and will any of them play for the New England Patriots?

CBS Sports predicted, “under the radar AFC players who can be stars in 2024.” They chose one candidate from each of the 16 American Football Conference franchises. Their choice for the Patriots was second-year wide receiver DeMario Douglas.

Tyler Sullivan wrote of his choice:

“After a respectable rookie season, Pop Douglas could end up being New England’s most-targeted receiver in 2024. He was the Patriots’ most electrifying pass-catcher in 2023 and, with a year under his belt, could end up being one of the breakout receivers in the league in terms of his statistical volume as the club’s slot receiver.”

Also Read – Patriots Predicted to Select No. 1 in the 2025 NFL Draft

DeMario Douglas

Douglas caught 49 passes for 561 yards last season. He rushed for an additional 41 yards on eight attempts. Although DeMario Douglas did not score a touchdown in his first NFL season, he did make an impact. He won the Mike Haynes Award as the New England Patriots Rookie of the Year.

The Patriots passing attack struggled in 2023. They finished 29 of 32 teams in passing yards and No. 27 in passing touchdowns. With a new offensive coordinator in Alex Van Pelt and a revamped QB room, New England hopes for significant improvement as a team in 2024. Douglas is likely to be among the beneficiaries.

DeMario Douglas’ rookie performance was especially impressive considering he dealt with being in Bill Belichick’s doghouse after a Week 2 fumble. He also dealt with health issues. Douglas suffered two concussions, causing him to miss three games.

Quarterback is not the only position with significant changes for the Patriots in 2024. Their wide receiver room features draft picks Ja’Lynn Polk and Javon Baker. New England signed K.J. Osborn as a free agent as well. Douglas, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Tyquan Thornton, and Kayshon Boutte return from last year’s team. The battle for roster spots and playing time will be fierce, though Douglas appears a lock for a significant role.

A player’s second NFL season often sees a significant jump in production as they adjust to the grind of an NFL season and the speed of the game. The New England Patriots would love DeMario Douglas to make such a leap in 2024 and prove CBS Sports correct.

Award-winning blogger, Dan's work has also been featured on Fox Sports, Boston Metro, Barstool Sports,, and many other outlets.

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