Yeah, yeah, yeah the Patriots don’t have a first round pick, but most of the time Bill Belichick trades down 37 times before he makes his first pick anyway. How many times have we, as Patriots fans, watched 4 hours of the draft and waited all night for the Pats to make a pick only to see the name switch at the bottom of the screen and hear Chris Berman say “the Patriots have made a trade.” You get disappointed until you see that Belichick has turned one late first-round pick into three mid-round picks this year and one pick next year. I would pay a season ticket’s ransom to sit in the Patriots war room just to see Coach Belichick at work moving up and down the draft. Most interesting to me would be to hear what he has to say about each selection. Imagine what “The Hood” had to say when the Browns took Johnny Manziel or when the Cowboys took Randy Gregory last year. Thursday night might not be the most interesting night of the NFL Draft for Patriots fans, so here are 3 names to keep an eye on in the later rounds that could make a splash in Foxborough.
1. Keenan Reynolds QB-Navy
Reynolds is listed as a quarterback but there is no chance of him playing QB at the next level. Reynolds is an athlete, the classic “we don’t know where he plays, but he’s a football player” type. Reynolds only passed for 79 yards per game at Navy, but he rushed for 85 touch downs over his four years at Annapolis. If there is one thing that Belichick loves it’s the Naval Academy and if there is two things he loves the second is football players who can play multiple positions. On the surface, Reynolds seems like the kind of guy that would flourish in New England. Check out Bob Socci’s audio below for his thoughts on how Keenan Reynolds would fit with the Patriots.
2. Cyrus Jones- DB- Alabama
I watched almost every game Alabama played last year and one of the players that jumped out at me was Cyrus Jones. It seemed like there was a moment in each game the Tide played this season where the defense or special teams made a back breaking play and Jones was in the middle of each of them. He had four punt return touch downs in 2015 alone. Let that sink in while you remember Chris Harper’s muffed punt in Denver last season. I was surprised when I saw that Mel Kiper, Jr. had him slotted low enough for the Patriots, but for special teams alone he could be a fit for Foxborough.
3. Glen Gronkowski- FB/TE Kansas St.
He’s a Gronkowski, you can never have too many. He plays some fullback and tight end and blocks well from both positions. The Patriots utilize fullbacks more than most teams, with James Develin back but missing all of last season, a FB/TE combo could find a spot here. Check out to the audio below with Ryan Hannable of WEEI.com for his thoughts on the possibility of another Gronkowski coming to New England.
Sterling Pingree (@SterlingPingree on Twitter) is a co-host on The Drive, 4pm-6pm weekdays on 92.9fm The Ticket. Follow The Drive on Twitter, @DriveShowBangor and “Like Us” on Facebook “Drive Show Maine.” Stream The Drive live on 929TheTicket.com.