FOXBORO, Mass. — Eliot Wolf said all the right things when he held a pre-draft press conference at Gillette Stadium on Thursday.

The Patriots de facto general manager kept all options open for New England in the 2024 NFL Draft.

The Patriots, Wolf said, could trade up, trade back or stay put at third overall. New England could draft a quarterback at No. 3, and Wolf believes the top QB prospects are worthy of that pick. But the Patriots also could pass on a first-round signal-caller all together. Wolf said he doesn’t think the quarterback position is the only position that could be jotted down on New England’s draft card April 25.

Wolf kept his draft competition guessing, not tipping his hand a week before the draft.

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Wolf also spoke glowingly about New England’s offense, from the offensive line to the group of play-makers the Patriots have.

“We have NFL receivers, we have NFL tight ends, we have NFL running backs, we have NFL offensive linemen,” Wolf said.

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Wolf even said he thought others outside the organization were underestimating the roster. To prove his point, he mentioned how the Patriots re-signed offensive tackle Mike Onwenu, tight end Hunter Henry and Kendrick Bourne — all players were on one of the league’s worst offenses in 2023. Wolf said the signings of external free agents like Chukwuma Okorafor, who would start at left tackle if the season started this week (it doesn’t), and wide receiver K.J. Osborn, helped supplement the roster entering the draft.

“We feel good about where we are and we feel through free agency, on the offensive side in particular, that we’ve been able to supplement our roster properly, so we’re not having to draft for need as much offensively,” he said.

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That’s fine to say publicly, too.

After all, what’s his other option? He announces the Patriots will take whatever quarterback is there at No. 3? He rejects the notion New England could trade back? He agrees the Patriots’ roster is not good enough to drop a developmental quarterback into?

That was never going to happen.

Neither was Wolf undressing the players on New England’s current roster, or criticizing the team’s lack of a game-changing wide receiver and lack of a franchise left tackle. Wolf is right about the Patriots having NFL receivers, tight ends, running backs and offensive linemen. But what kind of bar is that to set?

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There’s a real chance the Patriots improve their most dire needs in the NFL draft, but only if Wolf views those needs as dire.

So, again, it’s fine for Wolf to say it all publicly. But if he truly believes it, if he truly believes the Patriots would be fine going a different direction than quarterback at No. 3, or if he truly believes the team would be fine with its veteran question mark at left tackle, that would be much more concerning.

Featured image via Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports Images