It’s almost time to find out if the New England Patriots will continue to draft based on their typical measurable and testing standards.
As part of our analysis leading up to this week’s 2017 NFL Draft, we earmarked players at each position who best fit the Patriots with each of the team’s selections.
We didn’t look at quarterbacks, because the Patriots already have three on their roster and it doesn’t appear Jimmy Garoppolo will be traded. To finish off the project, however, Texas Tech’s Pat Mahomes, Cal’s Davis Webb, Pittsburgh’s Nathan Peterman and Minnesota’s Mitch Leidner all are perfect fits based on their measurables. North Carolina’s Mitchell Trubinsky, Clemson’s Deshaun Watson and Tennessee’s Joshua Dobbs also meet their standards.
Click on the positions below to see the complete list of fits at each selection.
The Patriots also are stacked at wide receiver. Ole Miss’ Quincy Adeboyejo is an intriguing late-round prospect.
Iowa’s George Kittle is our favorite tight end prospect. He’ll likely come off the board in the third round.
Bucknell’s Julie’n Davenport likely will come off the board in the third or fourth round. He’d be a worthwhile project for the Patriots, who lack certainty at the position beyond 2017.
Ole Miss’ D.J. Jones best fits the Patriots’ prototype. Defensive tackle isn’t a big need for the Patriots, and Jones could still be around late in the draft.
The Patriots’ biggest need in the draft is at defensive end. Florida Atlantic’s Trey Hendrickson seems like a perfect fit in the third or fourth round.
The Patriots also could use an upgrade at linebacker. BYU’s Harvey Langi is the best bet to land with the Patriots.
If Malcolm Butler sticks around, then cornerback isn’t as big of a need. If he’s traded for a high pick, the Patriots could replace him with USC’s Adoree’ Jackson. There’s a lot of smoke connecting the Patriots to Jackson, and a source told NESN.com that New England has shown interest in the talented, multi-faceted cornerback.
Michigan’s Delano Hill is a third-round prospect with experience in the slot. He could wind up being a better pro than highly touted college teammate Jabrill Peppers.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports Images