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MORSE: Patriots Mock Draft 2.0 and Free Agent Signings

Mark Morse
Mark Morse on Twitter
March 17, 2021 at 10:46 pm ET

MORSE: Patriots Mock Draft 2.0 and Free Agent Signings(PHOTO: USA Today - USA TODAY Sports)

🕑 Read Time: 4 minutes

This Mock Draft was done after the Free Agent spending spree was done and was created using Fanspeak On-the-Clock Draft Simulator using the Ranking from Steve Shoup as of 3/17.

We now have a better idea of what the team’s needs are.  As of this writing, it was reported that we are losing Offensive Center David Andrews, a big loss.  Consequently, we have signed Ted Karras back on a one-year deal.  Fortunately, this is a great year for Offensive Centers.  I select two Day Three players that can play either LG or C.

Note:  These are the latest draft pick selections after the Cannon trade was revealed yesterday.

15: R1 P15: QB Trey Lance – North Dakota State

I would take either Lance or Mac Jones with pick 15.  If neither are there, then trade back in the 20-23 range for either Rashod Bateman or Zaven Collins.  This move would be Part 2 of the rebuild with Cam Newton as the bridge QB for a year while Lance learns.  I would never play a rookie QB the 1st year.  Sit and learn.

If Lance is their guy I wouldn’t be opposed to moving up to get him.

46: R2 P14: LB Zaven Collins – Tulsa

Collins is ranked 24 by Rigdon and that is where I would rank him too.  I like Collins more than Parsons.  Can’t believe he was available at this spot, without having to trade up?

96: R3 P32: DL Alim McNeill – NC State

We still need a stout D-lineman and this is the first of two.  McNeil is a shade under 6’2” and 320 lb Nose Tackle.  That would give us three with Godchaux and Davis signed.  Davis has a history of concussions.  McNeil is estimated to run a 4.96 40.

120: R4 P4: DL Marlon Tuipulotu – USC

Another Nose Tackle run stopper.  At 6’ 3” 305, Tuipulotu could move to defensive end.  He is described as a twitched-up player that gets off the line quickly with heavy hands.  He plays to the whistle.  Don’t need to take him off the field in passing situations.

122: R4 P34: CB Eric Stokes – Georgia

With the uncertain situation with Stephon Gilmore and JC Jackson (2nd round RFE tender), I felt compelled to take a CB.  Stokes ran a 4.33 40 at The EXOS combine and 4.34 at his Pro Day.  He also posted 39” Vertical, was measured at 6’0” 194 lbs and had 33” arms which scouts love.

139: R5 P3: G David Moore – Grambling State

Moore dominated the Senior Bowl practices.  He played some OC too so scouts could see him play.  He is described as nasty and mean, a “FU” type of player.  He solid at 6’3″ 320 and all muscle.  I Haven’t seen his 40 time but the write-ups say he can run like a deer.  Two-time Captain and Team MVP.  The team did not play in 2020.  He was voted practice player of the week for the American team, by the DL players he dominated.

187: R6 P4: C Quinn Meinerz – Wisconsin-Whitewater

I wanted Meinerz and would take him with the Round 5 pick.  In this ranking, Moore was 188 and Meinerz in the 200’s.  If you have read my reports from the Senior Bowl and previous Mocks, I love Meinerz.  He also dominated the Senior Bowl practices against the top senior talent.  Breaks his hand and finishes practice and begs to play in the game on Saturday.  All he did at this Pro Day was to run a 4.86 40 at 6’2” 320lbs.  He has Patriots written all over him.   Team Captain as a Jr.  Team did not play in 2020.   He was voted practice player of the week for the National team by the DL players he dominated.

196: R6 P13: S Christian Uphoff – Illinois State

He is an interesting developmental player.  Uphoff is almost 6’3″ 217 lbs as a Free Safety.  He runs a 4.5 40.  He is long for a Free Safety and the Pats need to think about finding a replacement for Devin McCourty.  He could be stashed on the Practice Squad for a year to develop.

I think all these players are going much higher than this mock.  No way is Collins slipping to us in Round 2.  As I stated we might have to trade up if we want Lance.  I could see the Pats passing on both DL and moving everyone else up.

Morse’s Morsels:

– Interesting that news comes out after the Cannon trade that he was the only COVID Opt-Out player not to come in for a post-season physical.  He has not been to Foxboro since he opted out?

– Glad to see Justin Bethel get rewarded with a three-year contract.  He will be the Special Teams leader to Matthew Slater once he decides to retire (which I hope is never)

– The Patriots have signed 16 Free Agents on the first day of official Free Agency … WOW!

– According to @PatsCap Miguel Benzan, the Free Agent spending spree has most of the signings backloaded into years when the Cap should go up with new TV revenue.  They have plenty of money available to sign more big-name players, or trade for a big-name QB that has a high, established salary cap number.

Player                                                  Age

Nelson Agholor – $7M                       27

Hunter Henry – $6.875M                    26

Matt Judon – $6.375M                       28

Jonnu Smith – $5.6875M                   25

Jalen Mills – $4.5625M                       26

Davon Godchaux – $4.0625M           26

Deatrich Wise – $3.25M                     28

Kendrick Bourne – $3,119,791           25

Henry Anderson – $2.75M                 29

Carl Davis – $859,375                         29

I added their ages and it’s obvious we targeted players that are reaching their prime.   This isn’t a “win now” rebuild.  This is for the long haul.

– Patriots OL coaches attended the Pro Day workout of DIII Wisconsin – Whitewater OL Quinn Meinerz on March 9th.  Other teams in attendance were the Bengals, Steelers, and Panthers. See my mock draft for more on Meinerz.

– Patriots are bringing back Ted Karras on a one-year $4M deal.  He immediately becomes the starter.  It appears that the Patriots couldn’t come to terms with David Andrews.   The Patriots may have been holding the line because the 2021 draft is loaded with quality OC.  As you can see from my mock draft, I have them taking two physical OL that can play both LG and OC.

– Re-signing Cody Davis is another important part of the #1 ranked special teams unit (according to longtime Dallas Morning News scribe Rick Gosselin).   He plays on all 4 ST units and is the personal protector on punt teams.  He had 9 special team tackles last year.

– They are bringing the band back together.  Kyle Van Noy is re-signing.  Perhaps he will bring some of that Boogey-Man swagger back to the defense.   We are building a formidable defense with a few question marks concerning Gilmore and Jackson in the secondary and if we are able to retain Lawrence Guy on the DL.

Long-Time Patriots Safety Patrick Chung is Retiring

About Mark Morse

Merrimack Valley native and lifelong fan of the New England Patriots. My earliest memories of the Patriots were attending as a child with my dad, the off-season practice at Phillips Academy. I was at the Patriots game at Harvard Stadium in 1970 where Bob “Harpo” Gladieux was called out of the stands by the stadium announcer over the PA to play in the game. Analyzing the draft since ESPN first started to televise it in 1980 and former writer for the Lowell Sun Newspaper.

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