As the New England Patriots officially wrapped up the 2018 season (with yet another Super Bowl championship), it is time to move on to the 2019 season. Which brings all the attention to the NFL Draft and free agency.
In this year’s draft, New England will select 32 overall, a position they have become quite familiar with during this dominating 18-year stretch. Since their first Super Bowl win in 2001, the Patriots have held the 32-overall pick five times. Here’s how they used them:
2002: Traded (Moved up to select tight end Daniel Graham)*
2004: Selected Benjamin Watson
2005: Selected Logan Mankins
2015: Selected Malcom Brown
2017: Traded (Acquired Brandin Cooks from New Orleans)
*Traded picks 32, 96 and 234 to Washington for pick 21
Looking over the list, New England’s history at No. 32 has treated them kindly. Tight ends Ben Watson and Daniel Graham both were reliable players during their stints in New England, whereas offensive lineman Logan Mankins started 130 games for the Patriots in his nine seasons with the team.
As for Malcom Brown, the 6-foot-2 defensive tackle has started at least 12 games every year for the Patriots since being drafted in 2015. He often flashed his potential of being a difference maker on the defensive line, especially during the 2018 playoff run.
And of course, Belichick has traded out of the last pick twice, something he is never afraid to do.
Looking forward to the 2019 Draft, it appears New England could use their first selection at the wide receiver, tight end and defensive tackle positions. However, retirements or free agent losses to players such as Rob Gronkowski, Devin McCourty, Trey Flowers or others could shake up their draft day needs.
The Patriots could also resolve some of their roster needs during free agency, which begins on March 13, nearly a month before the NFL Draft begins on April 25. Either way, New England currently sits with 12 draft picks which sets them up nicely to add some young talent to their roster, and hopefully make another strong selection at pick No. 32.