Positions and players the Patriots should target in the draft
The NFL Draft is just about a month away, and fans and media everywhere are starting to research the draft websites and magazines to find out what prospects could fit their team the best. For the New England Patriots, their first pick in the draft doesn’t come until pick number 60. They have a couple of needs for the now and the future that they could address through the draft, and here are a few names to look out for at those positions.
Joe Haeg, Offensive Tackle: The average Patriots fan more than likely wants Bill Belichick to address the offensive line in this year’s draft, due to the fact that Tom Brady was hit over 20-time in the AFC Championship in Denver. Joe Haeg is a 6-6, 293-pound offensive tackle out of North Dakota State, who wouldn’t come in and start right away, but could provide much needed depth along the offensive line. He played on both sides of the line in college, and could be that back up tackle behind the likes of Nate Solder, Sebastian Vollmer, and LaAdrian Waddle. In addition, bot Solder and Vollmer have contracts that are up after the next two seasons.
Cyrus Jones, Cornerback: Behind Malcolm Butler the Patriots are paper thin at the cornerback position. Logan Ryan was improved last season, but still showed his flaws down the stretch last season, and has proven over his three NFL seasons that he is unreliable. Behind him the depth chart is filled with the likes of Rashan Melvin, Justin Coleman, and Daryl Roberts. Cyrus Jones could be taken in the second or third round, and he is exactly what they need in terms of a nickel back. He struggles against bigger bodied receivers, but can play against the small slot receivers, which is what the Patriots lacked last season. Justin Coleman was exposed big time as a nickel back in the postseason. Furthermore, Jones was a phenomenal punt returner last year returning four punts for scores.
Devontae Booker, Running Back: The Patriots are not a running team, and with Tom Brady as their quarterback they probably never will be. However, last season they were hurt by having virtually zero running threat. They need to address the, “bell cow” back spot in this draft. The perfect fit would be Devontae Booker out of Utah. At 5-11, 219 pounds Booker is built and plays a lot like Stevan Ridley. Also, he has had a fumble issue. As a rookie that is something that can be coached up, and he fumbled three less times in 2015 than he did in 2014. The Patriots need a big body at running back that can get you that one yard on third and goal from the one. Booker can be that, and look for him to go in the third round.