As the 2021 NFL Draft draws closer we’ll profile some of the players that may be on the Patriots’ radar or that we feel would be a great fit.
The Patriots need to be much better with their run defense, which at times in 2020 was absolutely woeful. After showing signs of improvement in November against very good running teams in Baltimore and Arizona (1st and 4th respectively in the NFL), December was a nightmare for the run defense.
The team was gashed by the Rams, allowing 186 rushing yards. New England then allowed a Dolphins team that was missing their # 1 running back (Myles Gaskin) to roll over them for 250 yards on the ground.
That total was a season-high for the Patriots’ defense and nearly doubled the previous high for Miami’s offense. But it wasn’t just December, it was an ongoing issue all year. The team really missed having a nose tackle that could two-gap over the center. Danny Shelton left via free agency and they signed Beau Allen to fill the gap but he never played a down in 2020.
But the interior defensive line needs more depth for players who can A. stop the run, and B. rush the passer. We already profiled Levi Onwuzurike, from the University of Washington.
If the offensive players that the team is targeting aren’t there in Round 1, then a premium defensive player may on the radar.
Christian Barmore, DL, Alabama is arguably the premier interior lineman in the draft.
Barmore is a redshirt sophomore and another in the long line of Alabama defenders from Nick Saban’s pipeline, who will make his name heard on draft day. He has prototypical size for an interior DL at 6’5, 310 who had to wait his turn in Alabama and was redshirted his freshman year.
In 2019, Barmore blossomed and logged 26 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, and 2 passes defensed. In 2020, he made 37 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 8 sacks, 3 passes defensed, and 3 forced fumbles.
He’s extremely disruptive, for such a long, thick player. He has great power and explosiveness off the line and possesses a tremendous rip move when getting after the QB. He has the versatility to be moved around the defensive line. For such a big man, Barmore has surprising agility, very strong, active hand usage, and displays excellent vision to read and react to plays.
– Very good length and weight physically
– Outstanding explosion off the snap and a great disruptor inside
– Versatile, can play anywhere along the line
– Excellent power, can penetrate gaps
– Only 21 years old, doesn’t have a ton of experience
– Hand usage timing and precision should get even better with time
– Needs to be more disciplined in his rush lanes
What his Role Will Be:
Barmore will begin as a rotational, sub-package interior pass rusher. For which he is ideally suited
Will His Role Change from Year 1-2?
Yes, with improved coaching, and experience, he should become a full-time starter by Year 2.
How Many Downs Can He Play?
What Current Player on the Roster Will He Replace?
Adam Butler, who will probably sign elsewhere during free agency
What is his ST Value?
Barmore was the Defensive MVP in the National Championship Game against Ohio State with 5 tackles, two tackles for loss, and a sack. NFL draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah said that Barmore, “turned it way up” once the college football playoffs started.
Barmore isn’t a nose tackle and can have issues with double teams when placed over the center. But it is an area, that he can improve on. But he’s an outstanding penetrator in the running game as well as the passing game.
He has tremendous upside and should be a fantastic addition to any defense. He has the versatility to be a 4-3 interior defensive lineman, but could also line up as a 3-4 defensive end. But he’s best suited to attack the line of scrimmage and be disruptive at the line of scrimmage. He’ll give the team an interior pass rusher who can also stuff the run…an issue with the current (2020 team).
Barmore’s highlight reel tape from the College Films can be seen here:
Posted Under: 2021 Patriots Draft
Tags: 53 Man Roster Projection Adam Butler Beau Allen Bill Belichick Christian Barmore Dont'a Hightower Lawrence Guy New England Patriots patriots defensive line Patriots defensive tackles Patriots edge rushers