Who On Patriots’ 90-Man Roster Is A Lock To Last For Regular Season?


Aug 14, 2017

If nothing else, the Patriots’ preseason opener hinted at which players have the most solid standing on New England’s 90-man roster.

Those who were in uniform but didn’t play Thursday night all have a more-than-solid shot at cracking the Patriots’ 53-man roster. And anyone who did see action at Gillette Stadium probably should wait to extend any leases until Sept. 2, when teams must trim their rosters from 90 players to 53.

We sorted the Patriots’ 90-man roster into locks, near-locks, roster bubble players and longshots. See which 38 players we’re guaranteeing will make the Patriots’ 53-man roster (barring injury, of course).

LOCKS (38)
QB Tom Brady
QB Jimmy Garoppolo
RB Rex Burkhead
RB Mike Gillislee
RB James White
WR Danny Amendola
WR Brandin Cooks
WR Julian Edelman
WR Chris Hogan
WR Malcolm Mitchell
WR Matthew Slater
TE Dwayne Allen
TE Rob Gronkowski
C David Andrews
OT Marcus Cannon
OT Antonio Garcia
OL Shaq Mason
OT Nate Solder
OL Joe Thuney
DT Alan Branch
DT Malcolm Brown
DE Trey Flowers
DT Lawrence Guy
DE Derek Rivers
DT Vincent Valentine
DE Deatrich Wise
LB Dont’a Hightower
LB Kyle Van Noy
CB Malcolm Butler
SS Patrick Chung
SS Nate Ebner
CB Stephon Gilmore
FS Duron Harmon
FS Devin McCourty
CB Eric Rowe
P Ryan Allen
LS Joe Cardona
K Stephen Gostkowski

— These were fairly easy. The only name we briefly struggled with was Vincent Valentine. But he was the Patriots’ No. 3 defensive tackle last season and didn’t play in the team’s first preseason game. We’ll give him the lock.

QB Jacoby Brissett
FB James Develin
RB Dion Lewis
OT Cameron Fleming
OL Ted Karras
DE Kony Ealy
LB David Harris
LB Brandon King
LB Harvey Langi
LB Shea McClellin
CB Jonathan Jones

— These are players that would make us say “wow” if we saw their names released on the transaction wire, but they’re not quite stone-cold locks for which we’re willing to put our name on the line.

— Brissett, Lewis, Fleming, Karras, Ealy, King, Langi and Jones all played in New England’s first preseason game. McClellin was injured and didn’t suit up. Develin and Harris are the only players above who did not play.

— You could make a strong case that Develin is a lock, but the Patriots always could determine they don’t need a fullback.

— Most of the above players have a player at the same position listed below in the “bubble” category.

RB Brandon Bolden
RB D.J. Foster
WR Austin Carr
WR Devin Lucien
TE Jacob Hollister
TE James O’Shaughnessy
OT Conor McDermott
OT LaAdrian Waddle
DT Adam Butler
DE Geneo Grissom
LB Jonathan Freeny
LB Elandon Roberts
CB Justin Coleman
CB Cyrus Jones
CB D.J. Killings
CB Kenny Moore
SS Jordan Richards
FS Jason Thompson
SS Damarius Travis

— Since there are 49 players on the lock and near-lock lists, most of these players have poor odds of making the 53-man roster. But there’s a shot, and a few of these names absolutely will slip through.

— Because of the Patriots’ lack of depth at the position, Richards might have been on the near-lock list before Thursday night, but he’s a safety who struggles in deep and one-on-one coverage. He has to be in the bubble category.

— It might be surprising to see Roberts on his list, but he and Harris both are early-down linebackers who don’t contribute on special teams. It would be slightly surprising if both made the roster.

RB LeShun Daniels
FB Glenn Gronkowski
WR Cody Hollister
WR K.J. Maye
WR Tony Washington
TE Sam Cotton
TE Matt Lengel
OL Cole Croston
OL Jamil Douglas
OL James Ferentz
OT Andrew Jelks
OL Jason King
OL Max Rich
DT Josh Augusta
DE Keionta Davis
DT Woodrow Hamilton
DE Caleb Kidder
DT Darius Kilgo
LB Trevor Bates
LB Brooks Ellis
FS David Jones
CB Will Likely

— A few of these guys could shoot up to the bubble category with a strong end of the summer. Cotton, Lengel and Hamilton were the closest to making the cut. We haven’t seen Davis yet, but he came highly touted out of Chattanooga before an injury prevented him from being signed as an undrafted free agent until Friday.

Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images

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