The 2022 NFL Draft is ticking near to New England sitting on the clock. This will be the last mock draft before the Patriots put their picks in. Depth and versatility is calling Bill Belichick’s name this spring, here are the prospects that can give the New England Patriots that.
Round 1 – TRADE
New England sends the 21st overall pick and a future fifth round pick to the Detroit Lions for the 34th and 66th overall pick.
Round 2, pick No. 34: DB Dax Hill, Michigan
There are two things Bill Belichick loves when it comes to the NFL draft: Michigan and trading down. Bill Belichick has drafted a Wolverine in three straight drafts and Hill is a prime target to make it four in a row. The feeling around the league regarding this year’s draft is the belief in a lot of depth within the top-100, but not exactly a generational class. It’s not a great year to have a top-10 pick, but it’s a fantastic year to have multiple picks inside the first three rounds. If a top-15 talent fails to fall to New England at 21, trading down is an attractive spot for the Patriots.
Hill brings elite speed and versatility similar to Devin McCourty coming out of Rutgers, a player Hill has drawn comparisons to. Hill’s athletic numbers (4.38 40, 6.57 three-cone), combined with his physical play and tackling ability should greatly interest the Patriots. While the safety position is locked up for 2022, New England needs speed and talent in the secondary. Perhaps Hill starts his career at corner, like McCourty, eventually making the transition to the safety position.
Round 2, pick No. 54: LB Troy Andersen, Montana State
Earlier this week, Patriots Director of Player Personnel Matt Groh discussed the need to get faster everywhere on the field. Allow former Quarterback with 4.42 speed at 245 lbs Troy Andersen to fill that void. Andersen clocked in a 6.72 three-cone at his pro day which is a number Bill Belichick would love from a slot receiver. Andersen plays like a missile with a relentless motor and presents crazy high ceiling in New England.
Round 2, pick No. 66: WR Alec Pierce, Cincinnati
While the Patriots recently invested in a big-bodied outside threat in DeVante Parker, Pierce brings a different set of skills. Pierce offers more speed and quickness on the outside, giving him versatility to be put in different spots on the field. At 6’3″, Pierce ran a 4.41 40 with a 7.13 three-cone, presenting a rare combination of size and speed.
Round 3, pick No. 85: LB Damone Clark, LSU
Clark will most likely miss the 2022 after undergoing spinal fusion surgery. Which is the only reason Clark will likely be available in the third round. Since the Patriots have a variety of players to try out at linebacker this season, Clark is worth the investment. He comes from a program that translates to the NFL very well on the defensive side and his 4.57 speed at 240 lbs brings a modern style to Bill Belichick’s defense.
Round 4, Pick No. 127: DL Neil Farrell, LSU
Farrell is a late round run stuffer who can help New England in the trenches. The Patriots currently do not have a dependable interior defender who defends the run game. Experience and play strength are worthy traits in the later rounds.
Round 5, Pick No. 158: OL Jamaree Salyer, Georgia
While Salyer could go as high as the second round, it would be great value if he starts to slide. Coming from a program that Bill Belichick respects, Salyer offers versatility across the entire offensive line. Salyer draws similar to traits to Michael Onwenu, someone who displays tackle/guard ability with great a mix of balance and power.
Round 5, Pick No. 170: CB Jalyn Armour-Davis, Alabama
Armour-Davis has gained momentum since analyst Chris Simms listed him in his top-5 cornerbacks in this year’s draft. His mixture of size and speed coming from Alabama check the boxes for a developmental Bill Belichick cornerback. At this point in the draft, teams will draft players with tools and potential, with Armour-Davis’ frame and ability, he has the tools to become a strong player in man coverage.
Round 6, Pick No. 200: RB Hasaan Haskins, Michigan
It is rather shocking that a highly productive player from a big-time program is a projected day-three pick. Haskins recorded 1,327 and 20 touchdowns. His value is low because he is a power back who is unlikely to become a three down runner. However, that is not how Bill Belichick crafts a running game. Haskins has the balance, strength, and patience to give New England security in the future.
Round 6, Pick No. 210: OL Jason Poe, Mercer
Poe is becoming a league favorite. Guard and fullback versatility, 4.89 speed at 335 lbs with great tape against Alabama. Patriot.
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