2018 Draft: Potential Early Round Patriots

Greekca

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Ahead of the combine, I thought it would be helpful to highlight a few guys at each position that might be on the Patriots draft board for their early two picks (currently #31 & #41 or #43 depending on March 2nd coin flip).

Quarterback

A lot of talent at the top of the draft, but also a lot of need at the position across the NFL. Unless one of the top guys falls, I don't see the Pats using one of the top 2 picks on a QB.

If he falls: Josh Allen, Baker Mayfield
Could be there: Mason Rudolph, Luke Falk, Kyle Lauletta

Runningback

Lot of depth with this position group. If this position is addressed in the draft, my guess is likely to be in the mid-rounds. Should be solid talent deep into the 3rd and 4th rounds.

If he falls: Derrius Guice
Could be there: Sony Michel, Kerryon Johnson, Rashaad Penny, Nick Chubb, Royce Freeman

Wide Receiver
Appears to be very little consensus with this position group and also relatively weak on talent. Only clear consensus first rounder appears to be Ridley.

If he falls: Calvin Ridley
Could be there: Christian Kirk, Dante Pettis, Deon Cain, DJ Moore

Tight End
Not a super stellar group. A decent number of round 2-4 type of guys.

If he falls:
Could be there: Dallas Goedert, Hayden Hurst

Offensive Tackle
Another somewhat underwhelming position group. No clear cut left tackle talent, but some okay right tackle options.

If he falls: Connor Williams, Mike McGlinchey
Could be there: Kolton Miller, Martinas Rankin, Brian O'Neill

Interior OL
Much more talent on the interior this year. Best OL prospect this year is probably Quenton Nelson at OG. Sadly, not much of a need here though.

If he falls: Isaiah Wynn, James Daniels, Billy Price
Could be there:

Defensive End
Not a super deep group for the types of guys the Pats look for. Not a lot of guys who can rush the passer and stand up in the running game, and we saw how a pass rush only guy worked in this system with Cassius Marsh and it wasn't pretty.

If he falls: Marcus Davenport
Could be there: Sam Hubbard, Rasheem Green, Taven Bryan

Defensive Tackle

Easily one of Belichick's favorite positions to address early in the draft. Had great success early on, but latest returns with Easley and Brown haven't quite worked out as well.

If he falls: Vita Vea, Da'Ron Payne
Could be there: Maurice Hurst, Tim Settle, Harrison Phillips

Linebacker
Not many linebackers fit the Belichick ideal mold of 6'3" 250 these days as most of those guys have been turned into straight pass rushers. Tremaine Edmunds probably best fits the Belichick ideal, but he will be long gone by the time the Pats pick.

If he falls: Roquan Smith, Rashaan Evans
Could be there: Harold Landry, Leighton Vander Esch

Cornerback

Another deep position at a position of need for the Patriots. A lot of guys that measure over 6' and excel in man-to-man press coverage.

If he falls: Josh Jackson, Mike Hughes
Could be there: Isaiah Oliver, Jaire Alexander, Carlton Davis

Safety
Second year in a row where this position group has two very strong guys at the top and then a pretty steep drop off after that. Not likely to be a position of need.

If he falls: Derwin James
Could be there: Ronnie Harrison, Justin Reid
 
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SMU_Sox

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So much depends on free agency. Pats tend to draft for need in the medium to long run.

Keeping that in mind before cuts, free agency, and extensions here are the contracts at each position for 2019:

Let’s start on defense:

Corners:
Gilmore, 13.6M
Cyrus Jones, 1.27M
This is a class that has, and Masco/Mark just talked about this on Friday a deep group of guys. Fully expect B.B. to draft at least one corner.

Safeties:
McCourty, 13.4M (that’s high)
Harmon, 4.5M

They need to find an eventual Chung replacement. McCourty is also getting up there.

OLB:
Hightower, 10.4M
Rivers, 0.88M

ILB:
Van Noy, 6.4M
Roberts, 0.75M (I really do not like Roberts)
Langi, 0.65M

Depth needed and room for a smaller faster nickle guy or having our own Deion Jones type.

DE:
Guy, 3.8M
Wise, 0.79M
Davis, 0.57M

Excited for year 2 of Wise.

DT:
Brown, option
Valentine, 0.9M
Butler, 0.65M

Not much from a pass rush here. Like the DE’s it’s not that this is a bad bunch just not the most athletic or special. You could make an investment to upgrade the talent and then use the guys on contract as rotational and depth players.

As of now I think there is a valid argument for spending a 1st-2nd on any of these groups. Value is part of the equation here. Just one example but the DTs and pass rushing edges available at 31-63 might not be worth the price given their quality in this year’s draft but the Corners are potentially a steal.

Offense:

QB:
Goat, 22M

What happens if the Patriots have a high grade on a QB that drops to them at 31 or 43? With so many needs and Brady still playing well they don’t need to get a guy at 31. Kyle Lauletta will be there in the 2nd and maybe 3rd.

RB:
White, 4.0M

This class is chalk full of backs. Another position where the value should meet the pick given the depth of the class. I think the Pats extend or re-sign some guys but if not SOSH will have many RB binkies to drool over.

TE:
Gronk, 12M
Allen, 7.4M
Bennett, 6.5M
Hollister, 0.65M

Gronk gets injured. Hollister is going into year 2. Allen and Bennett are either restructured or cut. I don’t think any of the TEs are safe at 31, or worth it given the other talent or needs.

WR:

Cooks?
Edelman, 4.7M
Mitchell, 0.86M

Need help here. Receiver is an area where I have only looked at a few guys. Not much I can say other than from what I have read and heard there are not a lot of complete players but lots of specialized or WR2/3/Slot types. I think they might look to upgrade slot.

O-Tackle:

Cannon, 7.6M
Garcia, 0.89M (not sure if he is healthy or will be and no information out there on specifics)
Croston, 0.65M
Jelks, 0.57M

They are thin here if Solder doesn’t re-enlist. Class is divisive. Haven’t watched a ton here either.

Guard/Center:
Andrews, 2.6M
Thuney, 0.94M

Need depth and guys here. Done some research here and I like a lot of day 2 guys. Just finished looking at Austin Corbett for example. I think the Pats will go for a day 2-3 interior lineman with potential swing tackle ability.

You look at the offense and there are plenty of holes here too. Aside from maybe a pure center you could spend on any of the positions on offense too. I’ll fill in the groups as signings and/or extensions made.
 

Super Nomario

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One guy I can see is Pittsburgh LT Brian O'Neill. He sounds a lot like Solder did coming out - good size, great athlete, came into college as a tight end and still needs to build strength and refine technique. He played TE and DE in high school (where he also lettered in lacrosse) and both LT and RT in college. I'm not sure if they'll be looking to take a tackle that high - who knows what's going on with Tony Garcia - but O'Neill would make sense, would likely be there with one of the second-round picks, and fits the profile of the kinds of OT they tend to draft.

He's even a good enough athlete that Pitt did a gimmick throwback lateral to him for a TD:
 

EL Jeffe

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I'm starting to talk myself into Tim Settle, 6'3" 330lb NT/DT from Va Tech if they stay at their 1st round slot. He's got rare explosiveness for a guy that size and there's a glaring need to upgrade the talent level inside (e.g., Ricky Jean-Francois playing a major role down the stretch). BB certainly seems to like picking DL in the 1st round and Settle has major upside. On the downside, as a 3rd year Soph, the experience level is limited. Weight management will also be an issue, but again, with guys like Wilfork, Ted Washington, et al, BB seems okay with junk-in-their trunk NTs. I think Settle has the explosiveness/quick twitch to be a disruptive pass rusher, even if the sack totals never get too high.
 

Greekca

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I am a fan of both O'Neill and Settle to the Patriots. If anyone is interesting in watching a little tape of them at the same time, here is tape of Pitt vs. VT (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpvUVhwdz3I&t). O'Neill is #70 in white and Settle is #4 in maroon.

Tim Settle
As EL Jeffe pointed out, Settle has a rare combination of size and movement skills on tape. Will be interesting to see how he does in drills at the combine and also what his weight and arm length measure in at. At this point in time, his play is a little undisciplined and he needs to refine his technique. Has had concerns in the past about his conditioning and from off the field interviews he doesn't have that "Patriots type" feel to him. However, Belichick defenses have always performed best with a 330+ pound monster in the middle of the defensive line whether it is Ted Washington, Vince Wilfork, or good Alan Branch.

He strikes me as a second round guy right now.

Brian O'Neill

As Super Nomario pointed out, O'Neill is a very athletic tackle that was given some opportunities to get the ball in some gadget plays while at Pitt. He supposedly really struggled at the Senior Bowl largely due to his technique falling apart. However, if they think the technique can be cleaned up and he has the potential to increase his play strength, he seems to fit the Patriots left tackle profile. A lot of the same positive and negative buzz words that are used to describe him were also used on Solder and Garcia: "quick feet", "lateral quickness", "good length", "needs to add strength and bulk", "a little grabby", and "needs to work on his balance".

O'Neill: 6'7", 296, 34" arms, 9 3/8" hands
Garcia: 6'6", 305, 33 3/8" arms, 9 7/8" hands
Solder: 6'8", 319, 35 1/2" arms, 9 7/8" hands

He strikes me as a late second to third round guy right now.
 
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Super Nomario

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Lorenzo Carter of UGA intrigues me. I'm working on laying out the 2018 ITP Draft Guide (which you can pre-order now!) and the writeup of Carter brings to mind Jamie Collins. Ideal frame, crazy athleticism - he ran a 4.50 at 6'5" 250 lbs, with jumps to match. He never quite performed up to his 5-star recruiting status, but part of that was Georgia using him in a variety of different ways so he never got to put up eye-popping numbers in any one area. But I think that's good for the Pats - he can do some coverage stuff, some rushing stuff, defends the run pretty well, can be moved around. He'd be a guy who wouldn't require a departure from what they like to do but would still inject a lot of athleticism into the front seven.
 

EL Jeffe

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I was a Settle guy but with the Shelton acquisition (who's basically the same type/role), that ship has likely sailed. Carter is probably my next pick. You watch him against Notre Dame (and their excellent OL) and you'd think he's an easy top 5-10 pick. He was explosive off the edge, disruptive as a pass rusher, set the edge in the running game and looked comfortable when aligned off the line playing in space and in coverage. And then you watch him against Oklahoma and Andrews (a finesse/move TE) easily handled Carter in the running game. Carter tends to get glued to blocks and doesn't play with the power you'd expect. He makes a ton of sense at #31 though because there are so many rare/raw tools in areas the Pats need. Flowers-Carter-Wise-Rivers-Lee-Davis is the makings of a nice, young DE corps.

My ideal first two days is shaping up to be Carter - Darius Leonard - Duke Dawson - QB (I like Falk, but Lauletta or Litton would work for me as well.)

I've talked about Leonard before but he'd be a nice piece behind Hightower & Van Noy for a season and then hopefully taking over for Van Noy in year 2. Leonard is A Dude out there at ILB. Dawson is one of my favorite corners this year; his physical traits and play style are reminiscent of Malcolm Butler. Not the biggest or most athletic (but competitive enough in both areas) but physical, aggressive and energetic. He can play slot or outside and should be competitive as a plug-and-play rookie.
 

SMU_Sox

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I am counting down the days until the guide is released ! Heard you guys have looked at around 500(!!!) prospects.

Carter is one of the guys I looked at too. Let’s take this moment to acknowledge just how loaded those Alabama and Georgia teams were this year.

Georgia has Michel, Chubb, Smith, Wynn, and Carter all with 1-2 round buzz. Personally I’m very bullish on those first four but then there is Carter. I saw a mixed bag on tape. I saw him knock over receivers and tight ends who tried to block him but also lineman or bigger tight ends move him on blocks he could not shed. He stuck to some tight ends on routes but they were larger and less athletic than say a Mike Gesicki. What I look forward to reading is his ceiling and potential because, if this makes sense, he has day 2 film but day 1 athleticism. Wouldn’t surprise me if he needs a year or two for refinement but that’s to be expected. Jon Ledyard mentioned him as a potential guy who will be a reach based on his film. I don’t think that’s necessarily fair if you are high on his potential and ceiling and want to develop him.
 

SMU_Sox

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My ideal is either a top tier LB like a Carter or an Evans at 31, or Sam Hubbard. Then with 43 and 63 a corner, pick your guy Meeks, Davis, and/or a safety like Justin Reid.
Basically with those three picks get 3 of the following and double-dip if the talent is right: Off-ball LB, corner, safety, edge or DE.
 

SMU_Sox

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Two guys I want to talk about one who is very polished but needs to develop more as a pass rusher (B.J. Hill) and one who is extremely raw but with a high ceiling (Nathan Shepherd). Some time in the last 3-4 weeks Jonah Tuls had a short piece out on NC State Defensive Tackle Justin Jones. I was interested but while watching made a note to come back to 98. 98 is B.J. Hill. He is not my number 1 DT. But he’s a guy that should be available in rounds 2 and likely 3+ who I think would fit in well for the Patriots as a compliment or depth to Malcolm Brown.

Hill is a four year starter at NC State and was a top 100 recruit. He played basketball and football in high school. He played DE and RB for his team, and he is still very athletic.

When I look at defensive lineman I look at a variety of abilities and traits such as: pad/level and balance, ability to stack and shed blocks, hand usage, first step or initial burst, range, play strength, pass rush success and techniques, and the mental component.

Hill has great balance and pad level. He was one of the more efficient tackles at stacking and shedding blocks. He really was a terror against the run. He has great range. I saw him shed a block and go lateral down the los with a RB and chase him down for a short gain. Also saw him drop into zone coverage and move well - that blew my mind a bit.
He’s flashed way above average burst but usually it is just average to above average. Hill has the tools and potential to be a pass rusher but needs someone to refine his handwork and strategy there. He can find his way into the backfield though and can get by guard center double teams so I think this is an area where he could improve with coaching.

Hill often worked through and around double teams. I read from others that there is evidence on film that he is not always consistent with this but I didn’t see any glaring problems.

Hill is a guy with a high floor as a smart and athletic interior defender. I think with his athleticism and dedicated approach and NFL coaching his ceiling is high too.

I will get to Shepherd next. Bottom line with him is I like him but... he’s raw, needs a lot of work, and is older. I get the buzz around him but his age and needing a lot of work and refinement gives me pause.
 

SMU_Sox

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Quick fun experiment. Is there a prospect who you would want the Patriots to trade up and get if they fall? Let’s try to avoid guys who are obvious locks for the top 10 so guys like Roquan Smith would be nice but they won’t be there.

I’ve heard recently that Harold Landry might fall. Yes, the Pats have a lot of needs and trading up is something I am loathe to do usually. I think though that if Landry’s ankle was healthy in 2017 he’d be a top 10 lock as the best pass rusher in the class. He’s probably the one guy who I think has a realistic chance of falling and who I wouldn’t be upset if the Patriots traded up to get.

Any of you have a guy like that in this year’s draft?
 

bsj

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Gesicki is the guy for me. He has the ability to be a dominant 2nd TE on this roster, and while i dont think Id burn a rd 1 pick for, if he dropped to mid 2< i would like to go get him

Guys i am keeping my eye on...

Mike Gesicki TE (Rds 1-2)
Malik Jefferson (rd 2?).....OLB, if they dont get or want Landry
Anthony Averett ...rd 2 or 3...CB
Justin Jackson ...RB (rd 4?)

Havent even examined OL yet
 

Cellar-Door

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Quick fun experiment. Is there a prospect who you would want the Patriots to trade up and get if they fall? Let’s try to avoid guys who are obvious locks for the top 10 so guys like Roquan Smith would be nice but they won’t be there.

I’ve heard recently that Harold Landry might fall. Yes, the Pats have a lot of needs and trading up is something I am loathe to do usually. I think though that if Landry’s ankle was healthy in 2017 he’d be a top 10 lock as the best pass rusher in the class. He’s probably the one guy who I think has a realistic chance of falling and who I wouldn’t be upset if the Patriots traded up to get.

Any of you have a guy like that in this year’s draft?
Probably Landry for me too,
Highly unlikely, but I think if Lamar Jackson gets into the 20s you have to think about going and getting him.
 

Captaincoop

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Reading Bob McGinn's draft preview on BSJ, and he is down on Landry. None of this sounds wrong from what I saw watching BC.

The whole piece is interesting, but don't want to paste too much:

“Played more D-end for them but can’t be a D-end up here. Not a physical guy. Doesn’t really play hard.” Arms measured 32 7/8, ran 4.64, worked out pretty well and had 24 reps on the bench. “He needs to win initially for success,” said a second scout. “Does not fight pressure. Run-around type. Tight in space.” Scored 20 on the Wonderlic. “I think he’s a pipedream,” said a third scout. “But he could be top 50 easy.”

Also on O'Neill from Pitt:

Started two years at RT and last season at LT. “He’s very athletic,” said one scout. “Everyone thinks they’ll be able to develop him. He’ll be like that (Jake) Fisher from Oregon a couple years ago (2015, second round).” Ran a fabulous 40 (4.82). Arms were 34, hands were 9 3/8. Struggled against power in the Senior Bowl. “He is an athlete but limited strength and power,” said another scout. “He’s the kind of guy I used to get excited about but will end up getting cut. He’s really soft.”
 

Infield Infidel

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I think Royce Freeman would be a value pick with the 3/95. He could be a 3-down back, if he can block to his size (230 lb). He didn't have to block much at Oregon. He caught 79 passes in four years. Since he started four years and had some injuries his junior year, how much tread is on those tires? If he's still there after 3rd round, I'd consider trading up into the early 4th.
 

EL Jeffe

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Yup, I'm a big Freeman fan too. He looked a lot like a young Steven Jackson early on, but his play/explosiveness fell off this past season. The tire tread is a real concern, but I think for his rookie contract, he should be good to go. I take his sluggish junior season as a combination of injuries and playing to not get hurt. Leonard Fournette had a bit of that his junior season as well, but Fournette was obviously in a different talent class than Freeman. Still, Freeman looks like a big back who can catch the ball and get chunk plays on the ground.
 

SMU_Sox

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Love me some Royce Freeman too. I watched him after the combine when his athletic testing popped to me. I watched him against Washington and Arizona. Think he looked like a very capable NFL back in those games and someone who with more work receiving could be a dual-threat back.

Let's get this out of the way, his blocking is not good. He needs to break into his routes faster after he chips or finds no one to block. He also didn't always work well as a release valve when the play broke down. I saw him give up a time or two when he was playing underneath linebackers in coverage in the middle. He wasn't the best route runner either and in a small sample size I did not like his vision as a receiver but I am discounting that because of the sample. All of these are fixable problems. The talent is there he just needs more developing.

As a runner he occasionally played with too high a pad level but the majority of the time he knew he was hitting a tight crease he got down. He is very effective at changing direction on the go but not a natural stop/starter. His high end speed is fine, not elite but average to above average. His ability to shed arm tackles and work through through contact is encouraging especially because he can get to the outside and run past linebackers and through safeties and corners who don't fully wrap him up. His vision is something I've heard discussed as a divisive trait with him. It seemed to me like his vision was very good on plays where his initial crease was there even if it was small - he would do things like guiding guards and receivers for blocks and making moves to redirect safeties than cutting the other way, etc. If a play was blown up or he had to improvise he was more hesitant and often tried to do too much or made mental errors I think related to vision.

I think there is a theme to him, he is not the best improviser whether it is to work back to his QB in the passing game when the play is on the move or starting to break down, or as a runner when his options get eliminated. He is good at hitting his hole and then running in space and after contact. I think that is also a coach-able issue.

Edit: Hey, guess which idiot forgot to put in his combine numbers before he hit post. Yours truly.

Keep in mind his testing numbers are not weight adjusted. If you weight adjust his numbers you are looking at a top 10%-20% athletic RB.

Royce Freeman: RAS: 8.33, very good.

Height: 5114, 70th percentile
Weight: 229: 89th percentile
Forty: 4.54, 69th percentile 4.54 at 229. That's good.
Ten: 1.59, 67th percentile
Twenty: 2.65, 64th percentile
Shuttle: 4.16, 80th percentile
Bench: 17 reps, 45th percentile
Vertical: 34, 53rd percentile
Broad: 9'10", 58th percentile
3-Cone: 6.9, 81st percentile

His change of direction and short area bursts are all above average or very good especially given his size. His 40 is also more than respectable.
 
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SMU_Sox

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Football Outsiders Speed Score 2018 has been out for a bit and offers hope for Royce Freeman.

A little bit about Speed Score:

Created by Bill Barnwell and introduced in Pro Football Prospectusand ESPN Insider back in 2008, Speed Score is one of Football Outsiders' metrics for evaluating running back prospects. It's built on the simple idea that smaller backs tend to run faster than larger backs, so we should be more impressed by a 4.5-second 40-yard dash from a 220-pound back than the same clock reading from a 170-pound back. As such, Speed Score incorporates a back's official time in the 40-yard dash with his weight to produce a measure of his speed given his size using this formula:

(Weight * 200)/(40 time^4).

The average running back who makes it to the NFL will have a Speed Score around 100, with most running back prospects falling between 85 and 110.
Look, it isn't a sure-thing. Even guys who grade out well can be busts. Only 34.5% of the 110+ prospects averaged over 500 yards per season for their years 1-5 seasons. It's slightly more advanced back of the envelope math to contextualize speed so take it with a grain of salt.

Freeman scored 7th best this year, 107.8 and Nyheim Hines was right behind him in 8th at 107.6.

Saquon Barkley registered the 4th highest score since 1999, 124.3.
 

SMU_Sox

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I would just about kill for Landry and I think he is the best pure pass rusher on the draft and could develop into a complete 3-down player. I’ve seen him fall to the late teens or early 20’s in some mocks but I am doubtful we can land him. Aside from a QB of the future not named Josh Allen he is the only player I’d be ok with trading up into the high teens low 20s to get.

You are such a tease, RedOctober, such a fucking tease.
 

Greekca

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McGlinchey at 43 would be a huge steal. Doubt he makes it to the Pats first round pick.

However, many experts view him more as a RT than an LT. He seems to fit the LT profile to me.
 

tims4wins

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McGlinchey at 43 would be a huge steal. Doubt he makes it to the Pats first round pick.

However, many experts view him more as a RT than an LT. He seems to fit the LT profile to me.
Thanks. Guess I will cross my fingers he slips to 31
 

Super Nomario

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Pats are hosting Christian Kirk on a visit. Intriguing WR prospect who has experience in both PR and KR duties. He has 6 TDs on PR's in 37 career returns with an average return over 20 yards.
They could use a slot guy to replace Amendola and there are a lot of interesting ones in this draft. I haven't decided who my favorite is yet.
 

SMU_Sox

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They could use a slot guy to replace Amendola and there are a lot of interesting ones in this draft. I haven't decided who my favorite is yet.
I was just talking to a co-worker about SMU's Trey Quinn and how I think he fits in with the Patriots. I have seen Quinn comped to Amendola before by guys I read a lot (always take a comp with a giant grain of salt). The more the draft season goes on the more I like him. He's not going to set the world on fire but I love his hands, route running, his floor. There are reports that he met with the Patriots at the combine. If he's available in the 6th I love the pick. Probably a reach by conventional standards in any round below the 5th but Patriots don't have a conventional 300 player big board. I am not sure I like the idea of spending a 1-3 on a slot receiver given other needs and positional values so I think even if I like others more than Quinn I want a bargain at that role. That's not to say that there aren't better bargains though. Any potential predicted rounds 5+ guys that you like?
 

chief1

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I was just talking to a co-worker about SMU's Trey Quinn and how I think he fits in with the Patriots. I have seen Quinn comped to Amendola before by guys I read a lot (always take a comp with a giant grain of salt). The more the draft season goes on the more I like him. He's not going to set the world on fire but I love his hands, route running, his floor. There are reports that he met with the Patriots at the combine. If he's available in the 6th I love the pick. Probably a reach by conventional standards in any round below the 5th but Patriots don't have a conventional 300 player big board. I am not sure I like the idea of spending a 1-3 on a slot receiver given other needs and positional values so I think even if I like others more than Quinn I want a bargain at that role. That's not to say that there aren't better bargains though. Any potential predicted rounds 5+ guys that you like?
P.J. Hall Sam Houston St.
and
Desmond Harrison West Georgia

Don't know about fit though.
 

thehitcat

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Didn't Amendola play nearly 60% of his snaps outside last season (even after Edelman's injury.) I think unless Edelman is broken they won't waste draft capital on the slot specifically, especially if they think they might have the answer already on the 90. I could maybe see them picking someone up UDFA to get another camp body.
 

Super Nomario

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Didn't Amendola play nearly 60% of his snaps outside last season (even after Edelman's injury.) I think unless Edelman is broken they won't waste draft capital on the slot specifically, especially if they think they might have the answer already on the 90. I could maybe see them picking someone up UDFA to get another camp body.
Edelman's on the wrong side of 30 and is coming off an ACL; they need a backup option. FWIW I think Dorsett is a more likely backup slot than McCarron.
 

SMU_Sox

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Hurst's numbers, aside from the bench, were pretty lackluster. These figures, combined with his medical issues and the fact that he's a tweener, figure to pus him into Round 2.

Read more: http://walterfootball.com/proday.php#ixzz5B4gkEtM6
It's Walter Football, and I do not usually go to them aside from names of players to potentially look at and to get information easily found there like proday results. So this could just be a hastily written hot-take.

I will have to wait for other's takes to come out but in terms of my own opinion Maurice Hurst is my DT1. I believe that is also true for most of the guys I listen to. Pop on his tape though - he is the best pocket disruptive force coming out. I really like Da'Ron Payne too but I figured Hurst was going top 10, top 15. I'll add Hurst to the list of guys who if they fall into the high teens or early twenties I would seriously consider trading up for.

My rule of thumb for that is that it is worth considering trading up for a guy who is top 12 on your board and who you have a first round grade on because for the Patriots you are getting that guy on a 1st round deal 14-20 slots lower than where you graded him. Not all first round picks are guaranteed successes but they have a much higher shot of working out. I also prefer trading up for the premium position guys like pass rusher and DTs who can rush the passer or QBs.

Before I saw the hot take my list of guys was just 1) Harold Landry. Now it is 2: 1) Harold Landry, and 2) Maurice Hurst.
I think Hurst is a fit on the Patriots roster but would like to get a take from someone on that.

I do not think either will be drafted by the Patriots because I believe both will be picked in the top 20, but they are two to keep an eye on.
 

SMU_Sox

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We now have Quenton Meeks full athletic testing. It's above average, and impressive for his size.

He is exactly 6'1" (71st percentile) and 209 lbs (78th percentile).
His 40 time is more than fine for his size: 4.49, 51st percentile.
3-Cone: 6.72 83rd percentile.
Vertical: 39", 86th percentile.
Broad: 10'08", 89th percentile.
Bench: 11, 15th percentile.
Shuttle: 4.23, 37th percentile.

Quenton Meeks is a corner out of Stanford. He's a press-man corner. You can actually listen to him talk to Jon Ledyard on the LockedonNFLDraft podcast. I liked Meeks going into the interview but I loved him after. Thoughtful guy. Intelligent. Yeah, yeah, yeah smart physical and tall Stanford corners. I think he would be a good compliment on the boundary eventually next to Gilmore. He can deliver highlight reel hits but I saw inconsistency and struggles against the run. You would think with his athletic profile and build it could be correctable and therefore he has a lot of upside as a guy who can defend the boundary receiver and the outside against the run. Given the Patriots struggles Bill might shy away from a DB who is a potential liability against the run.
His speed is great for his size but he is still only of average speed for a corner and would benefit with a safety playing up top in case he doesn't land his jam. I also worry with him if he is forced to play against a receiver schemed to get a free release. But there is much more that he does well than his warts and I think he would be a good fit on the Patriots in the 2nd or 3rd round.

The draft can't get here soon enough.
 

pappymojo

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Possible trade scenarios for the 31st pick:

Moving up
Pats give 31 & 95
Saints give 27 & 127

Pats give up 31 & 95
Titans give 25

Both moves would leapfrog the Steelers (28) if a quality linebacker/defensive player fell.

Moving down
Pats give 31
Broncos give 40 & 99

Pats give 31
Bears give 39 & 105

Pats give 31
Colts give 37 & 104

All three moves add a draft pick close to the top 100 if the Patriots feel there is a cluster of players with equal value available with their first pick.

Potentially the Patriots could land two players in the Lorenzo Carter, Isiah Oliver, Jaire Alexander, Ronnie Harrison range with the first pick they got in the trade (37, 39, or 40) and the 43rd pick they got from the 49ers. They would also still retain three more early-ish picks - their own two at 63 & 95 and the second pick they got for trading down (99, 104, 105). This plethora of picks, of course, could be used as fodder for additional trades.
 

EL Jeffe

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Before I saw the hot take my list of guys was just 1) Harold Landry. Now it is 2: 1) Harold Landry, and 2) Maurice Hurst.
I think Hurst is a fit on the Patriots roster but would like to get a take from someone on that.

I do not think either will be drafted by the Patriots because I believe both will be picked in the top 20, but they are two to keep an eye on.
Hurst's dad was one of my favorite players so I'll be rooting for the kid, but I'm not nearly as high on him as you are. It's really hard for these 6'1, 280-295lb. DTs to succeed in the NFL because OCs/OGs tend to swallow them up. You need to be pretty special (not necessarliy Aaron Donald special, but special) to be an impact player at that size and be able to consistently win at the snap. Hurst showed a very good burst in college but it's hard to say if he'll translate at the next level. Personally, I'd rather go with a guy like PJ Hall in the 3rd round than use the draft capital to move up for Hurst. Hall put up some freaky pro day numbers and dominated a low level of competition. Right now Hurst is clearly the better prospect, but three years down the line? I think it's pretty close to a toss-up. And again, based on size, I think there's a real chance that neither of them end up much more than rotational players.
 

Saints Rest

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Possible trade scenarios for the 31st pick:

Moving up
Pats give 31 & 95
Saints give 27 & 127

Pats give up 31 & 95
Titans give 25

Both moves would leapfrog the Steelers (28) if a quality linebacker/defensive player fell.

Moving down
Pats give 31
Broncos give 40 & 99

Pats give 31
Bears give 39 & 105

Pats give 31
Colts give 37 & 104

All three moves add a draft pick close to the top 100 if the Patriots feel there is a cluster of players with equal value available with their first pick.

Potentially the Patriots could land two players in the Lorenzo Carter, Isiah Oliver, Jaire Alexander, Ronnie Harrison range with the first pick they got in the trade (37, 39, or 40) and the 43rd pick they got from the 49ers. They would also still retain three more early-ish picks - their own two at 63 & 95 and the second pick they got for trading down (99, 104, 105). This plethora of picks, of course, could be used as fodder for additional trades.
I see these moving down options as highly likely. And I think that they could either flip that lower pick for additional mid/late round picks or simply look to a trade partner who is willing to do something like 40-something plus 150ish plus 200ish.
 

RedOctober3829

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The Cooks trade has suddenly made the Patriots big players in the first 2 rounds. They now have 4 picks in the first 2 rounds. It opens up the possibility of a big influx of young talented players in spots of need.
 

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The Cooks trade has suddenly made the Patriots big players in the first 2 rounds. They now have 4 picks in the first 2 rounds. It opens up the possibility of a big influx of young talented players in spots of need.
It also opens up the possibility that a lot more of the top 25 players are now in play, as it is a lot easier for a top player to fall to 23 than to 31, plus Bill has a lot more ammo for moving up from 23, be that 3-4 spots or a major move of 14-18 spots.
 

RedOctober3829

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It also opens up the possibility that a lot more of the top 25 players are now in play, as it is a lot easier for a top player to fall to 23 than to 31, plus Bill has a lot more ammo for moving up from 23, be that 3-4 spots or a major move of 14-18 spots.
I am of the opinion now that he will most likely trade down with 1 of the picks and pick up multiple 2nd-3rd rd picks. We know that a lot of the 2nd round picks have 1st round talent but are cheaper. As we've seen with multiple players now, Bill doesn't necessarily see that 5th year option as good value for every 1st round pick so unless there's a big time talent that he really likes he could look to get multiple players in that 2nd-3rd round that have just as much talent as the 1st rounders.
 

tims4wins

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Or he may trade up from 23, but not into the top 5 or top 10. Maybe someone he loves falls to 18 or something and they package a later pick + 23 to move to 18 and get their guy
 

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Or he could move up and move down!

Maybe he trades 23 for something like 27 and a later pick. Then trades 31 for a 2019 1st and a later pick this year.

Bottom line is that he has a lot of ammo to move up or down. Even if he sits where he is, he can get 4 guys in the top 63 which would be a nice haul in and of itself.
 

SMU_Sox

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Or he may trade up from 23, but not into the top 5 or top 10. Maybe someone he loves falls to 18 or something and they package a later pick + 23 to move to 18 and get their guy
My thoughts exactly if guys like Harold Landry and/or Maurice Hurst, maybe Da'Ron Payne, Bryant, etc. fall to the Seahawks. Same applies to an off-ball linebacker they like or a defensive back. Basically you now realistically have a chance of a getting a top 10 guy on many boards or a top probably 3-5 guy on the Patriots smaller board all at 18 with the Seahawks who need more picks anyway.
 

tims4wins

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My thoughts exactly if guys like Harold Landry and/or Maurice Hurst, maybe Da'Ron Payne, Bryant, etc. fall to the Seahawks. Same applies to an off-ball linebacker they like or a defensive back. Basically you now realistically have a chance of a getting a top 10 guy on many boards or a top probably 3-5 guy on the Patriots smaller board all at 18 with the Seahawks who need more picks anyway.
Right the Hawks make a lot of sense as a trade partner
 

pappymojo

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It all depends on who is available. Through the accumulation of draft picks and the free agents he has signed, Belichick as he so often does he has put himself in a tremendous position of flexibility - he will be able to take advantage of player value. He can trade up, he can trade down, he can stand pat, and he can do this at every level of the draft.

Edit: Grandma
 
Last edited:

Saints Rest

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My thoughts exactly if guys like Harold Landry and/or Maurice Hurst, maybe Da'Ron Payne, Bryant, etc. fall to the Seahawks. Same applies to an off-ball linebacker they like or a defensive back. Basically you now realistically have a chance of a getting a top 10 guy on many boards or a top probably 3-5 guy on the Patriots smaller board all at 18 with the Seahawks who need more picks anyway.
Not to pick on you, SMU, but I wonder when the last time BB took someone who either the national pundits or any of us here or on ITP liked.
This section of the board is called "Wait. Who???" for a good reason. Many of them actually.
 

tims4wins

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I would imagine a lot of folks liked Malcom Brown, Solder, DH, and Jones. Probably not so much Easley. Their first round misses have been pretty rare though. And even more rare have we said "wait, who" on a first rounder.
 

Saints Rest

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I went back to look at the draft picks contests. I found 2015 and 2014. In 2015, the winner had 3 picks right. In 2014, the winner had two picks right. mwonow had this to say in the 2014 contest:
Here's an interesting stat. In total, folks entering the context named 172 players. There were 256 picks made, nine by the Pats. As a rough rule of thmb, one might assume that in total, a group of 20+ smart Boston sports fans would get roughly 6 of the 9 picks - 172 is 67% of 256, and while not everyone gets drafted, pretty well all of the highest-ranked players do.

Instead, we collectively identified 2 of 9. Mugsy was the online one who got both, which does indeed make him the leader in the clubhouse...