Breakthrough for rookie WR Price?

One of the trickle-down effects of the Patriots’ trading Randy Moss is that 2010 third-round draft choice Taylor Price (90th overall) moves one notch up the depth chart. Price has been inactive for the team’s first four games.

The Patriots project to have Brandon Tate, Wes Welker and Julian Edelman atop the “pure” receiver depth chart (not including tight end Aaron Hernandez, who is receiver-like in many ways). Because of his special teams contributions, Matthew Slater will also be active as a fourth “pure” receiver.

Does this mean Price could finally break through?

A lot figures to depend on other needs on the 45-man game-day roster, but Price is obviously closer to the possibility than he was at this time last week.

“He’s making some progress,” Director of Player Personnel Nick Caserio said Monday. “We like Taylor. He has a good skill set – he’s big (6-0, 205), he’s physical, he has good hands. There are certain things at the position that I think he’s continuing to learn. There are a lot more components that are coming into play for him – No. 1 because he’s a rookie, No. 2 [because] the offense we’re using is different than the one he used in college.

“We’ll start practicing here Tuesday. Every day, every player is judged on their performance and we’ll make the decisions come game-time with the 45-man roster. I think he’s worked hard, moving in the right direction. How it all shakes down, we’ll just have to wait and see.”