If you often frequent NESN.com then you’re well aware of what we perceive to be the New England Patriots’ top remaining need this offseason.
If you don’t, well you should, but the biggest need remains pass rusher. The Patriots only have four pass rushers on their 90-man roster, and one is special teamer Geneo Grissom.
Here are pass rushers the Patriots are more likely to select in the draft based on their measurables and testing numbers.
Round 3, 72nd Overall Pick: Derek Rivers, Youngstown State
Get ready to see a lot of small-school prospects on this list. Rivers is undersized at 6-foot-4, 248 pounds, but he’s a fantastic athlete and could afford to pack on pounds even if he loses some of his speed or agility.
Since Rivers went to Youngstown State, Pro Football Focus didn’t chart every single one of his snaps. He had 15 total pressures on 77 pass-rush snaps and six stops on 48 run snaps. He primarily rushed from the left side.
Round 3, 96th Overall Pick: Trey Hendrickson, Florida Atlantic
Hendrickson led draft prospects in PFF’s pass-rush productivity with 78 pressures, including nine sacks, on 297 pass-rush snaps.
He’s a nearly perfect fit for the Patriots based on their past testing and measurable standards. He’s 6-foot-4, 266 pounds and ran an impressive 4.20-second short shuttle.
Round 4, 131st Overall Pick: Daeshon Hall, Texas A&M
Hall rushed from the left side while top prospect Myles Garrett played on the right. Hall wasn’t overly productive, generating just 38 pressures on 404 pass-rush snaps.
He has upside based on his size and athleticism, however. He’s 6-foot-5, 266 pounds with nearly 36-inch arms and ran a 4.76-second 40-yard dash with a 36-inch vertical leap, 10-foot, 3-inch broad jump, 7.03-second three-cone drill and 4.38-second short shuttle.
Round 5, 163rd Overall Pick: Tanoh Kpassagnon, Villanova
Kpassagnon is significantly bigger than the rest of the players on this list at 6-foot-7, 289 pounds. He recorded a combine broad jump of 10 feet, 8 inches, which is absolutely ridiculous for his size.
It’s a little crazy Kpassagnon went to Villanova rather than a bigger school.
Round 5, 183rd Overall Pick: Hunter Dimick, Utah
It’s more than a little strange Dimick wasn’t invited to the NFL Scouting Combine. He had 13.5 sacks and 83 total pressures on 497 pass rush snaps (all from the left side) in 2016 at 6-foot-3, 268 pounds.
Dimick lacks ideal length but impressed at his pro day with 38 bench press reps of 225 pounds and a 7.15-second 3-cone and 4.13-second short shuttle.
Round 6, 200th Overall Pick: Keionta Davis, Chattanooga
Another small-school guy? Yeah. I warned you there’s a lot. Spoiler alert: There’s another one right below.
Davis recorded six total pressures on 28 pass rush snaps in the one game PFF charted of his play. At 6-foot-3, 271 pounds, he showed impressive explosion with a 37.5-inch vertical leap and 10-foot, 1-inch broad jump during pre-draft testing.
Round 7, 239th Overall Pick: Avery Moss, Youngstown State
Told you there was another small-school guy.
Moss fits the Patriots’ typical standards with his size, length, speed and agility.
Undrafted Free Agent: Ifeadi Odenigbo, Northwestern
Odenigbo fits the Patriots’ typical standards with his 40 time, bench press, broad jump, three-cone and short shuttle.
He had 52 pressures on 300 pass rush snaps last season, per PFF.
Potential First-Round Pick: Myles Garrett, Texas A&M
You know, if the Cleveland Browns change their minds and decide to trade No. 1 overall to the Patriots for Jimmy Garoppolo.
Other fits include Kansas State’s Jordan Willis, Illinois’ Dawuane Smoot, Ohio’s Tarell Basham, Michigan’s Taco Charlton and Arkansas’ Deatrich Wise.
Thumbnail photo via Trevor Ruszkowski/USA TODAY Sports Images
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