Leading up to the 2020 NFL Draft, we’ll find fits at every position and in every round for the New England Patriots. First up, we’ll take a deep dive on quarterbacks.
The New England Patriots increased their need at quarterback last week when they released third-string veteran Cody Kessler.
Now, the Patriots will likely take a quarterback in the 2020 NFL Draft. We present more than seven options for the Patriots going round by round.
FIRST ROUND: Jordan Love, Utah
It’s strange to see a quarterback with a first-round projection who threw 20 touchdowns and 17 interceptions in 2019. But that’s what we have here in Love. He has a great arm, but his decision-making and accuracy need improvement.
The Patriots likely love his arm, but would they feel comfortable taking a quarterback in the first round with a 20-to-17 touchdown-to-interception ratio? We’ll see.
He could be gone by No. 23 overall, anyway. The latest report has some teams with Tua Tagovailoa ranked third or fourth on their draft big boards. If that’s common across the league, then the Alabama product would definitely be a fit for the Patriots.
If the Patriots take a quarterback in the first round, that player immediately would be competing with Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer for the starting role.
SECOND ROUND: Jacob Eason, Washington
Eason is another player with a big arm but major flaws in his game. His struggles under pressure are concerning, for sure. He does have the prototypical size that teams covet. And his accuracy in a clean pocket is impressive.
Perhaps most concerning: Pro Football Focus’ comp for Eason is Bryce Petty. Yikes.
The Patriots don’t currently have a second-round pick. They’d likely have to trade down from the first round.
THIRD ROUND: Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma
Draft projections for Hurts are all over the board, which is fitting because his college play was similarly erratic. Hurts didn’t look like an NFL prospect at Alabama, then he exploded at Oklahoma, throwing for 3,849 yards with 32 touchdowns, eight interceptions, 11.3 yards per attempt and a 69.5 completion percentage in 2019.
He doesn’t have the biggest arm, and he held onto the ball too long at times, but his athleticism and accuracy makes up for his flaws.
FOURTH ROUND: Jake Fromm, Georgia
We’ve seen Fromm projected as high as the second round. He’s just not an overly exciting prospect. He has an average arm and regressed during his 2019 season at Georgia, only completing 60.6 percent of his passes with a 68-percent completion rate.
He gets the dreaded “game manager” tag. A team could win with him, and he makes good decisions, but he doesn’t have any standout traits other than his ability to read a defense.
FIFTH ROUND: Anthony Gordon, Washington State
Opinions on quarterbacks coming out of air-raid offenses might be changing after the success of Patrick Mahomes and Gardner Minshew. Gordon is accurate but struggles as a decision-maker, at times. He’s undersized at 6-foot-2, 205 pounds, and his arm strength suffers from it.
SIXTH ROUND: Nate Stanley, Iowa
Bill Belichick’s old scouting notes revealed his top two criteria for a quarterback were good decision-making skills and arm strength. Stanley did a good job protecting the football at Iowa, and he has NFL arm strength. That could be enough for the Patriots to take a late-round flier on a quarterback coming from a familiar program like Iowa who did struggle at times with accuracy.
SEVENTH ROUND: James Morgan, Florida International
The Patriots reportedly FaceTimed with Morgan during the pre-draft process. We find it a little suspicious that the Patriots allowed that information to leak out.
Morgan isn’t a favorite of Pro Football Focus. He too has a big arm and limited his mistakes in college.