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Patriots Post-Combine Mock Draft through the 4th Round

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Projecting what options could be on the board for the Patriots now that the combine has come to pass.

Bill Belichick probably uses mock drafts as extra toilet oaper when on fishing on his VI Rings Boat.
Bill Belichick probably uses mock drafts as extra toilet oaper when on fishing on his VI Rings Boat.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Patriots have plenty of needs to work with in the draft and have more limited capital thanks to the pettiness of the NFL. This draft has a few blue-chip guys at the top, but otherwise there isn't a lot of talent after the Top 10. Free agency hasn't started yet, so predicting what the Patriots will do in the draft is basically wasted time. I figured to past the time for a day that we could discuss prospects. I have no idea what will actually happens once the Tennessee Titans are on the clock, so please don't hold me against it if I picked wrong here.

2nd (60)- Joe Haeg, OT, North Dakota State: The Patriots top need moving forward is at tackle, although depending on free agency. If the Patriots do the unexpected and sign a top FA OT like Mitchell Schwartz, that means the Patriots can then opt to go for a high-upside guy with a lower floor. The Patriots should be interested in this guy, he's a blue collar type player with tremendous athleticism coming out of a Pro Style offense. On film, Haeg stood out athletically with me jokingly comparing him to Patriots LT Nate Solder then later tore it up at the combine. Haeg could offer value as a swing tackle in 2016, but could push for a starting spot in 2017 and beyond. Haeg is the 2016 winner of the Ali Marpet Award: Small school OL that completely wows everyone during the entire draft process. Marpet went 61st overall in 2015, which is near where I expect Haeg to go.

Also Considered: Maryland CB/S Sean Davis, Lousiana Tech RB Kenneth Dixon, Utah State S Miles Killibrew, Rutgers WR Leonte Carroo, Minnesota CB Eric Murray

3rd (92)- Justin Simmons, CB/S, Boston College: Simmons lacks ideal speed to be a boundary CB in the NFL, but aced the combine in other areas. Simmons had the top posting amongst defensive backs in shuttle and three-cone with times of 3.85 and 6.58. In addition to the agility drills, Simmons jumped 40" vertically and 10'6" horizontally. The only thing he lacks is top speed, a weakness that could be masked with a move to free safety. Simmons is likely going to get red-shirted in the first year since the Patriots are 4-deep at the position, but could prove to be a solid Duron Harmon replacement when Harmon walks after the 2016 season.

Also Considered: Southern Miss WR Mike Thomas, Georgia WR Malcolm Mitchell, Northwestern FB/TE Dan Vitale, RB CJ Prosise, Massachusetts WR Tajae Sharpe, Wisconsin LB Joe Schobert, Temple CB Tavon Young

3rd (97)- Jonathan Williams, RB, Arkansas: Williams' draft stock depends on how well his foot checks out medically during the combine re-check. Even though the RB position has been devalued a bit in recent years, the Patriots should consider investing a Day 2 pick for the position. A healthy Williams could immediately plug into the #1 RB role in a committee that would feature him, Dion Lewis, and James White for now. If the Patriots are able to land Matt Forte, Chris Ivory, or Alfred Morris in free agency, they could opt to go for a high-ceiling pick in CJ Prosise from Notre Dame. Williams is a bruising type RB that consistently grinds yards after contact and is very solid in pass protection. He comes out of a Pro Style offense that is sending players to the NFL this year. Williams would have been a likely 2nd round pick if healthy in 2015.

Also Considered: Southern Miss WR Mike Thomas, Georgia WR Malcolm Mitchell, Northwestern FB/TE Dan Vitale, RB CJ Prosise, Massachusetts WR Tajae Sharpe, Wisconsin LB Joe Schobert, Temple CB Tavon Young

4th (127)- Kyler Fackrell, LB, Utah State: If the Patriots are unable to land Joshua Perry in the second round, Kyler Fackrell makes a good Plan B. The Patriots have gone with converted edge defenders for their linebackers with the recent drafting of Dont'a Hightower and Jamie Collins as well as signing Dane Fletcher as an un-drafted free agent. Fackrell fits the mold, as he has a good combination of size at 6'5" 245 with 33" arms in addition to a solid 4.72 40 and 1.64 split. I would have liked to see him run the shuttle and the 3-cone at the combine, but this guy could be a huge upside play in the future and can contribute on Special Teams now.

Also Considered: Southeast Missouri State WR Paul McRoberts, Appalachian State DL Ronald Blair, Temple DT Matt Ioannidis, Arizona State RB/WR DJ Foster, LSU OT Jerald Hawkins, Washington State OT Joe Dahl, UTSA TE Dan Morgan II, Alabama CB Cyrus Jones