After taking a player out of the University of Georgia in Isaiah Wynn with their first pick, they grabbed yet another when they found themselves back on the clock eight picks later Thursday night.
The Patriots selected running back Sony Michel with the 31st overall selection, wrapping up a night where they added depth on the offensive side of the football.
The selection of Michel caught everyone by surprise, as many believed that with quarterback Lamar Jackson falling to them at the end of the first round, he might be the player that would have been on New England’s radar. The Patriots had previously expressed a fair amount of interest in him, having reportedly brought him into Foxboro recently leading up to the draft.
Instead, New England passed on him at #23 when they drafted offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn, and then passed again when they grabbed Michel eight picks later. The Ravens then traded back into the first round after making a trade with the Eagles to close out the night, selecting Jackson with the 32 overall selection.
As for Michel, he’s an intriguing selection. He was a dynamic playmaker at Georgia, averaging 6.1 yards per carry rushing the football, along with 9.7 yards per reception. He rushed for 3613 yards on 590 carries during his career along with 33 rushing touchdowns, as well as catching 64 passes for 621 yards and six touchdowns out of the backfield. With the loss of Dion Lewis this offseason, it appears that Belichick may have found a potential replacement to compliment James White.
There’s reportedly an injury concern with Michel, with Mike Lombardi reporting before the draft that the Georgia running back was potentially dealing with a “bone-on-bone” condition in his knee and that may be the reason he fell so far in the draft.
However, Lombardi still liked what he saw from Michel and feels he could be a productive player in the NFL.
“I love this kid,” Lombardi said via DawgNation.com. “I think I’m concerned. There’s a lot of teams telling me there’s a medical concern here, so he could slip a little bit. I don’t know what it is, but the way the medical works at the combine is there’s a table with like six doctors from each team at one table and six different from another team at another table. His medical grade is a little iffy from what I’m told.
“But this kid, to me, is the prototypical NFL back. He can catch the ball, he can impact the passing game. Remember how we have to evaluate running backs– it’s block, catch, run. It isn’t run, catch, block. And this kid blocks well. This kid can be impactful. I love this kid as a player.”
Overall, while the Patriots didn’t get the defensive player they may have been hoping for, it’s hard not to feel good about the moves they made Thursday night. Between Michel and Wynn, they’ve added two more players to join Brady in his final seasons, which should leave fans pretty happy with how things played out.