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#pounditTuesday, June 18, 2024

JuJu Smith-Schuster responds to troubling report about his knee

JuJu Smith-Schuster smiles

Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots are hoping JuJu Smith-Schuster can become a reliable target for Mac Jones this season, but it does not sound like the wide receiver’s health can be taken for granted.

Smith-Schuster has dealt with a knee injury this offseason that kept him sidelined during organized team activities. Even with the former second-round pick taking part in all of training camp, SI’s Albert Breer said on NBC Sports Boston last week that Smith-Schuster’s knee could become a big issue.

“The underrated story here (is) JuJu Smith-Schuster’s knee is a mess,” Breer said. “That thing could explode at any point. You almost have to keep an extra receiver because of that.”

Smith-Schuster does not seem all that concerned. When asked on Thursday about Breer’s comments, the receiver told reporters he feels his knee is getting stronger by the day.

“I don’t think my knee is a ticking time bomb,” Smith-Schuster said, via Karen Guregian of MLive.com. “If anything, it’s something that’s getting stronger every day.”

Smith-Schuster suffered a knee injury during the third quarter of the AFC Championship Game last season when he was playing for the Kansas City Chiefs against the Cincinnati Bengals. He exited the game and did not return. He then caught 7 passes for 53 yards in the Super Bowl.

As for where Breer got the information, Smith-Schuster said the longtime reporter was probably just “trying to find a story.”

The Patriots signed Smith-Schuster this offseason to a 3-year deal that could be worth up to $33 million. They chose to sign him rather than bringing back Jakobi Meyers, who signed a very similar contract with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Smith-Schuster had a good reason for choosing the Patriots over other teams. It sounds like he envisions himself having a big role, but the knee will be worth monitoring.

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