The Patriots added three linebackers, two tight ends and three interior offensive linemen with their 10 picks in the 2020 draft. You might notice the Patriots did not take a quarterback or wide receiver.
The Patriots signed two quarterbacks and four wideouts during the undrafted free agency period but skipped out on the two high-profile positions with their draft selections.
Based on how the Patriots spent their 2020 draft capital (and more), here are this weekend’s biggest winners and losers:
QB JARRETT STIDHAM: If this draft was not a vote of confidence for Stidham, then I don’t know what is.
Unless something unforeseen occurs, then either Stidham or Brian Hoyer will be the Patriots’ starting quarterback in 2020. Stidham beat out Hoyer for the Patriots’ backup job last season. He very well could do it again this summer for the starting role. He shouldn’t have much trouble winning a QB competition over undrafted rookies Brian Lewerke and J’Mar Smith.
The Patriots also signed Stidham’s old slot receiver from Auburn, Will Hastings. Stidham was psyched to learn about the addition. It was a good weekend for the young QB.
WR JAKOBI MEYERS: Heading into the weekend, Meyers was on the roster bubble. The Patriots signed Marqise Lee and four undrafted receivers but didn’t draft a wideout. That’s good news for Meyers, who had a strong connection with Stidham last summer. We like his chances of making the roster and an impact.
C DAVID ANDREWS: The Patriots starting center missed the 2019 season with blood clots in his lungs. He announced he’s good to go for 2020 during the first round of the draft. The Patriots must believe him. They waited until the seventh round to take a center.
PATRIOTS OFFENSIVE LINE: Andrews is back, plus left guard Joe Thuney was not traded. That doesn’t mean Thuney won’t be moved in the future, but for now, he’s atop the Patriots’ left guard depth chart. The Patriots also added some beef to their O-line with three late-round depth options.
NIKE: ESPN loved getting shots of general managers and head coaches with their children while conducting the draft from home, which, by the way, seemed like a roaring success. They didn’t get any shots of Bill Belichick’s kids, because there was no reason to show half of the Patriots’ defensive coaching staff.
Belichick’s dog, Nike, and the canine’s new adoring fans, however, probably are the draft’s biggest winners. If Nike was present for all of Belichick’s news conferences, the Patriots head coach probably wouldn’t have so many grumpy moments. Can we arrange that, Stacey James?
Nike out here doing his job.
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) April 25, 2020
PATRIOTS VETERAN TIGHT ENDS: The Patriots doubled up on tight ends at the end of the third round, taking Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene. That puts Matt LaCosse’s starting role and Ryan Izzo’s roster spot in jeopardy heading into the 2020 season. It was an inevitability, however, because the Patriots’ tight end position was not nearly hardy enough entering the draft.
PATRIOTS 2017 DRAFT PICKS: We’re talking about the ones left on the team, who are edge defenders Derek Rivers and Deatrich Wise. They’re both on the roster bubble after the Patriots drafted Josh Uche and Anfernee Jennings with consecutive picks in the second and third rounds.
OL JERMAINE ELUEMUNOR: The Patriots restricted free-agent re-signing might find himself on the outside looking in at a roster spot after the Patriots grabbed Michael Onwenu and Justin Herron in the sixth round. Eluemunor barely played last season after being acquired from the Baltimore Ravens in what turned out to be an uneven swap for the Patriots.
PATRIOTS OVERALL OFFENSIVE PRODUCTION: Uh oh, the Patriots forgot to draft a wide receiver! Nike must have distracted everyone in the Patriots’ virtual draft room.
Belichick (sort of) defended the decision in his post-draft conference call, touting his current group of wide receivers. They still could probably afford to add another body to the group that is currently headlined by 34-year-old Julian Edelman, N’Keal Harry, Mohamed Sanu, Damiere Byrd, Meyers and Lee.
Some of the Patriots’ undrafted free agent receiver additions, like Hastings and Jeff Thomas, are intriguing, however.