The Patriots ended the weekend looking for the next depth pieces and special team projects. Some thoughts on the team’s day 3 picks:
Day 3 Rookies
RB Rhamondre Stevenson: The Patriots do not have a true power back; one may think Damien Harris fills that role, but Harris provides more outside ability than given credit for. Stevenson will be the heaviest on the roster and could fill the Legarrette Blount type need missing since 2017. Stevenson even mentioned Blount as a guy he models his game after. His production was eye popping in 2020: 665 yards and 7 TDs in just 6 games, averaging over six yards per carry. Oklahoma has produced strong NFL caliber running backs (Adrian Peterson, Demarco Murray, Joe Mixon). Perhaps Stevenson can be next.
LB Cameron McGrone: A knee injury hurt McGrone’s production out of Michigan, but Bill Belichick has grown a strong appreciation for Wolverine defenders. This linebacker group has filled up quickly; McGrone projects to be more of a depth piece at this point.
S Joshua Bledsoe: Depth/Special Teams
T William Sherman: Depth
WR Tre Nixon: They took a wide receiver! Nixon is the first wideout taken since N’Keal Harry in 2019. Nixon had a very productive 2019 season (830 yards, 7 TDs) and was held out the most of 2020 with a collarbone injury. At 4.44 speed and 15.3 yards per catch, Nixon offers a high upside deep threat for the Patriots.
Undrafted Free Agent Targets
S Ar’Darius Washington, TCU: A very surprising undrafted target. Washington could have gone as high as the third round, but due to his size and athletic concerns, teams did not share that value.
WR Sage Surrat, Wake Forrest
WR Tamorrion Terry, Florida State
RB Jaret Patterson, Buffalo: Never had a season with less than 1,000 yards and 14 touchdowns.
LB Dylan Moses, Alabama: Previously had 1st round pick potential, but fell due to injury and inconsistent play.
K Jose Borregales: PFF’s Highest rated kicker in 2020.
Honorable Mentions: RB Javian Hawkins, WR Jonathan Adams Jr, WR Austin Watkins, WR Cade Johnson, OL Drake Jackson, LB Justin Hilliard, CB Shakur Brown
- Could the days of Sony Michel and Chase Winovich be numbered? With the picks of Rhamondre Stevenson and Ronnie Perkins, one may wonder if they are replacement picks. With Sony Michel’s fifth year option approaching, the team may decide to cut bait. And with Chase Winovich’s lack of use in the run game, Ronnie Perkins could take his job. Especially considering Perkins put up a 90 grade in both pass rush and run defense.
- Remaining Cap Space: The Patriots could potentially have more than $10 million in cap space after the draft. With over 90 players on the roster potentially, perhaps the team will look to trades, cuts, and free agency when the dust settles.