Torry Holt, the newest Patriot, told reporters Wednesday that he still has something left and is excited to find a role in New England.
“I’ve still got plenty of football left to play,” said the receiver, who signed a one-year, $1.7 million contract. “I honestly believe that. I train. I prepare that way. I think that way. I carry myself that way, so it’s just a matter of a team giving me the opportunity to play and make plays for the football team. And I think coming to New England, hopefully, I have an opportunity to do that.
“You’re talking about playing with some of the most prolific offensive football players that the National Football League has. To have the opportunity to fit in with those guys, to learn the offense – I think the sky’s the limit.”
Holt has no intention of becoming the next Joey Galloway, whom the Patriots signed last year to play opposite Randy Moss. Galloway, clearly not the speedster he once was, struggled to fit into the Patriots’ scheme and was cut midseason after appearing in just three games.
While Holt admittedly isn’t as fast as he was while posting eight consecutive 1,000-yard seasons with the Rams from 2000 to 2007, he’s known to be a very astute route-runner and says he’s still capable of contributing.
“I’m not as fast as I once was when I first came into the National Football League,” Holt said. “I’ve had knee surgery, so that’s kind of slowed me down. I still have enough speed, enough sense of urgency, enough game speed to play and be effective and continue to make plays.”
The biggest challenge for Holt won’t be getting open. It will be learning a new system for the second consecutive season. Holt caught 51 passes for 722 yards in his only season with the Jaguars, who released him this offseason.
“The Patriots, their offensive scheme is complex, but it’s fair and it’s fun,” Holt said. “For receivers, it’s a system that you would enjoy being a part of, so I look forward to it.
“I just have to come in and learn some of the new terminology and some of the way they call, run routes and do things differently. And that’s fine; that’s all a part of it. But [it is] a very successful offense, a unique offense, and they have a guy at the helm in Tom Brady who can orchestrate and put everybody in position to make ball plays. So you just have to learn your part as quickly as you can, know what you’re doing, communicate, go out and play and play fast, and go out and have fun.”
Holt told NFL.com last month that he was looking to join a team that had an elite quarterback. He got his wish in Brady.
“I said I wanted to work with an elite quarterback, so I look forward to this opportunity. You’re talking about a guy who’s tough, he’s passionate, he’s well respected by his teammates,” Holt said of Brady. “I see that from the outside looking in, and I kind of got that feeling yesterday being in the building. The respect he garners there, the respect he garners across the National Football League, so you know when you’ve got somebody like him at the helm, you know you’ve got the opportunity of winning some games on Sundays, so I look forward to it.”