This has been a busy offseason for the Patriots to say the least. The Patriots have signed big names like Hunter Henry, Jonnu Smith, and Nelson Agholor. Also bulking up the defensive line with Matthew Judon, Davon Godchaux, Lawrence Guy, Deatrich Wise and more.
There also has been major improvement in the linebacker room with the additions of Raekwon Macmillan, and Kyle Van Noy, and the anticipated return of Dont’a Hightower. With all these additions the Patriots are quickly nearing the 90 man limit for the roster, and there is a very low chance that if the Patriots were to keep all their picks as they have them now that all the players would make the team.
With that being said let’s get into what opportunities present themselves for the Patriots.
Not too long ago there were rumors surfacing that the Patriots are very high on Justin Fields from The Ohio State University. This has been a topic of conversation among Patriots fans on whether the Patriots should trade up for him or not.
Certain picks like the number four selection which is held by the Atlanta Falcons, could potentially be up for trade. Trading up for a high selection like number 4 would take multiple picks and possibly players. ‘
Taking into account the draft selections the Patriots have this year, they would most certainly have to give up their current first round selection this year which is at number 15 right now.
It is certainly an interesting thing to be talking about since the Patriots are infamous for trading back during drafts.
It could also mean with the Patriots depth they wouldn’t shy away for trading for a QB, such as Jimmy G.
A Team Based on Versatility
Looking at all the Patriots free agent signings this year, a theme of versatility is found throughout a lot of the big names signed. For example tight end Jonnu Smith (formerly of the Tennessee Titans) has a history of lining up on all different places on the offense. He is known for lining up in the slot, backfield, and blocking.
Jonnu is also known for his talent of gaining yards after the catch which is something the 2020 Patriots struggled with. Another example of this is Jalen Mills on defense. Mills is known for lining up in almost all of the positions in the secondary.
Although Mills is rumored to fill the whole in the secondary which is left from the retirement of Patrick Chung, Bill Belichick is known for using defensive players in creative ways. Ultimately this team will be based on versatility on both the offense and the defense.
An Offense Built to Cam Newton’s Strengths
With the Patriots signing two top tight end free agents in Hunter Henry, and Jonnu Smith, it is very clear the Patriots will run the offense through the tight end group like the 2015 Carolina Panthers did.
Cam Newton has a history of targeting the tight end a lot, most notably with former panthers tight end Greg Olsen. The Patriots also signed free agent Nelson Agholor, who on the Raiders was a reliable deep pass target.
In 2020 Cam Newton was accurate on 70% of his deep passes which made him one of the most accurate deep passers during the 2020 season. Agholor averaged 18.7 yards per reception and caught 8 touchdown passes. Now with that, the Patriots could possibly be getting another QB. Whether that’s Jimmy G, or a future QB from the draft.
With the Patriots newest additions the 2021 Patriots will look a lot different from the 2020 Patriots. Whether it’s good or bad, it is yet to be seen.