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Danny Amendola excited and ‘looking toward the future’ with the Patriots

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The 2013 season for Danny Amendola turned out to be a disappointment mostly due to the groin injury he suffered in his first game in a Patriot uniform. Ironically it also turned out to be one of Amendola’s more productive games for the receiver who was brought in to replace the highly productive Wes Welker. According to the Providence Journal on Tuesday, Amendola is putting last season behind him and looking forwards to rebounding this upcoming season.

When the Patriots signed Amendola, he was already touted as an injury prone player. With that stigmatism attached to him as well as the pressure to replace Welker, The six-year player was never really able to get on track in the Patriot’s offense. When asked whether his injury affected him throughout the season, Amendola said, “Not really. I mean nobody plays at 100 percent throughout the whole NFL. It’s just one of those things.”

Fortunately for the Patriots it was a breakout year for receiver Julian Edelman, but a healthy Amendola could’ve added so much more punch to the Patriots’ offense, especially when Rob Gronkowski went down for the season. Although injuries vastly slowed the 28-year-old receiver, he refuses to make excuses and knows to be successful with the Patriots he will have to put last season behind him.

“For me, it’s the start to the season. Put the last season behind us and look forward to the next one, and this is where it starts for me,” Amendola said. “I really believe that. Have a good offseason, have a good OTAs and carry that through camp and keep it rolling.”

As Amendola enters the second year of his five-year, $28.5-million deal, it is important for him to prove he belongs. With the emergence of Edelman, the signing of Brandon LaFell and young receivers such as Aaron Dobson, Kenbrell Thompkins and Joyce Boyce looking to make major leaps this year, Amendola can be the odd man out, especially if injuries plague him again.

But the one major factor Amendola has on his side is that he is a veteran who knows the system and has shown flashes of being a very productive player in the system. He was just able to finish second on the team with 54 caches and 633 yards. Patriot’s offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels feels Amendola can only improve in his second year with the team. He said, “Now it’s his second year, and it will be exciting to see Danny’s growth as well. I know he’s a veteran player, but anytime you’re in your second year in a system you feel more comfortable just by the nature of being here a second year. So we’re excited to see what he does.”

Danny Amendola is excited as well and already seemed more comfortable with quarterback Tom Brady during OTAs. To continue that progression, he knows he has to mentally put the past behind him. He told reporters, “I don’t focus on last year. I’m just looking toward the future. So I’m excited about it.”

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