The Patriots find themselves in uncharted territory this season, and if things continue to spiral for New England, it will be picking at the top of the 2024 NFL Draft.

The last time the Patriots used a top-10 pick was in the 2008 NFL Draft when they selected Jerod Mayo 10th overall. However, that came after multiple trades, which originated from the acquisition of Randy Moss. The last time New England truly used a top-10 pick was when it drafted Richard Seymour in the 2001 NFL Draft at sixth overall.

New England would have the No. 6 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft if the season were to end after Week 6, and fans who have grown tired of seeing Mac Jones under center would like to see one of the high-end quarterbacks land with the Patriots.

However, The Athletic released its latest mock draft Wednesday and has Caleb Williams and Drake Maye going to the Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos at first and fourth, respectively.

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Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy and Texas’ Quinn Ewers are the only other quarterbacks projected to be taken in the first round, but The Athletic had them going in the middle of the first round.

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Patriots fans who want New England to take a player on the offensive side of the ball will be displeased to learn The Atheltic mocked Florida State edge rusher Jared Verse to the Patriots.

“Verse would be the most talented edge rusher drafted by the Patriots since Willie McGinest in the mid-1990s,” Diante Lee wrote. “He has the speed, motor, versatility and size to toggle between even and odd fronts — something we know Bill Belichick values. His opponents are doing everything in their power to keep him from affecting the game, but he’s been good as a run defender, and his gravity has created opportunity for his teammates to thrive.”

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Verse has been a menace to opposing quarterbacks this season, but edge might be the least for the Patriots’ concerns, of which there are many.

If New England does miss out on a quarterback, it’s possible it trades down, especially since consensus among draft analysts is that Williams and Maye are in a tier of their own in the quarterback class.

It’s been a disaster of a season for the Patriots, and fans likely will be trying to convince themselves about the other quarterbacks outside of Williams and Maye if New England doesn’t end up with a top-five selection.

Featured image via Melina Myers/USA TODAY Sports Images