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2018 NFL Draft Top 10 Patriots Fits #9: SMU Slot Receiver Trey Quinn

With Danny Amendola departing in free agency, the Patriots have a need to develop a slot receiver prospect.

NFL: Combine
Is Trey Quinn the next great slot receiver for the Patriots?
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The second installment of this year’s Top 10 will continue with Southern Methodist receiver Trey Quinn. Quinn was originally recruited by LSU out of high school after putting up insane numbers, but things didn’t work out there given how their offense is very run-heavy. He ended up transferring to Southern Methodist after two years in Baton Rouge and red-shirted his junior year. In his one season with SMU Quinn caught 114 passes for 1,236 yards and 12 TDs. Even with the gaudy college numbers, his athletic numbers don’t profile well as a boundary receiver, a move to the slot could really showcase his talents as a route runner and his short-area quickness.

Combine Data

Height: 5’11 3/8”
Weight: 203
Hands: 10 1/8”
10/20/40: 1.55/2.60/4.55
Vertical: 33.5”
Broad Jump: 9’8”
5-10-5 Shuttle: 4.19
3-Cone: 6.91

No Video (Couldn’t find any cut-ups of Quinn in action which just dumbfounds me)

Concerns: Even though the Patriots could use a slot receiver, Quinn has very little experience returning punts. While I think he could make a great slot receiver in the future, the Patriots aren’t going to have a 5th WR that has little to no Special Teams impact. Quinn has 6 career punt returns in college so using him as a punt returner is a bit of a projection although his agility numbers profile well. Quinn is limited to pure slot duty due to average size and speed, although that’s exactly what the Patriots could use.

Rookie Year Projection: Quinn would be the 5th receiver on the team behind Brandin Cooks, Julian Edelman, Malcolm Mitchell, and Chris Hogan, so there really isn’t much room for Quinn to play as a rookie unless he can carve a role. The best fit for him is stash in Year 1 and then unleash in Year 2 when Chris Hogan becomes a free agent. Given that the receivers in front of him have an injury history, Quinn could end up seeing time if the Patriots suffer a few injuries at the receiver position.

Long Term Fit: Quinn’s ability to flourish off option routes makes him an intriguing fit for the Patriots. He could easily turn into a safety-blanket against zone and be a perennial 100-catch guy and chain mover from the slot. He has some ability as a potential punt return option as he develops in the slot. The Patriots are one of the few teams that can maximize his potential on the football field with Tom Brady throwing him the ball and how the Patriots have utilized slot receivers in the past.

Player Comp: Jarvis Landry

Grade: 3/5 Developmental Player

Quinn doesn’t offer the Patriots much in 2018 given the team’s receiver depth, but is intriguing as a stash player in Year 1. His lack of experience as a punt returner is the biggest reason I could see the Patriots staying away and opting to pick a similar player with that punt return experience.

Draft Projection: 6-7

Quinn’s limited fit with teams will push his draft value down to the middle of Day 3 at the earliest. The Patriots haven’t invested a lot of capital at the position considering that the slot receiver position is more about quickness and route running and less about size and speed. Quinn could easily go undrafted despite the gaudy college numbers due to the few number of teams that run option routes out of the slot and have the QB to exploit that match-up.