Please click here for the first installment of my seven-round mock draft.
Finally! After over a month of no live sports — just replays of old, classic games — we are not even a week away from the NFL’s 2020 (virtual) draft. With the New England Patriots currently sitting on four picks inside the top 100 and owning 12 in total, there are certainly a lot of scenarios about what they could decide to do. One of the common themes surrounding the Patriots is a trade-back from number 23 to pick up a second-round selection and an early-third. With the Patriots needing to insert some youth at multiple positions, on both sides of the ball, they’ll need to use these picks to improve for next year and beyond.
With that said, let’s take a look at the second of three seven-round mock draft attempts.
- Patriots trade picks 3-98 and 3-100 to Jacksonville for pick 3-73.
- Patriots trade picks 5-172 and 6-204 to Chicago for pick 5-163 and a 2021 fifth-round selection.
- Patriots trade picks 6-212 and 6-213 to the Los Angeles Rams for pick 6-199.
In just about every mock draft I’ve done, I’ve traded out of the first round to hopefully pick up second- and third-round picks along the way, however, this time I’m staying at 23 and using a pair of two thirds to move up into the first selection in the third (who knew that was possible!). Now, I’m not Bill Belichick by any means, but with no second round picks and it being highly-unlikely that he uses all 12 picks this draft, I’m sure he’s going to try and finagle his way into the late second or early third in any way possible.
1st round, 23rd overall: EDGE K’Lavon Chaisson, LSU
Slam-dunk here for the Patriots at pick number 23 as Bill Belichick finds his edge rusher of the future. Chaisson, a team captain for the reigning National Champion LSU Tigers, brings explosiveness, athleticism and power off the edge. At 6-foot-3, 254 pounds, Chaisson can help after the departure of Kyle Van Noy: he can set the edge and help out in the run game, be effective in certain blitz packages, and knows how to use several moves to escape blocks and get to the ball-carrier or quarterbackk. If Chaisson is there at No. 23, run (to your computer) and submit this pick fast, Bill.
3rd round, 73rd overall (via trade with JAX): TE Adam Trautman, Dayton
I picked Trautman at No. 67 in my first mock draft and took him again here at 73. Bill Belichick lands his tight end of the future as Trautman checks all the boxes in terms of what the Patriots look for at the position. Despite the FCS competition, he dominated this past year hauling in 70 receptions for 916 yards, and 14 touchdowns. Trautman is listed at 6-foot-5, 255 pounds, he can run-block and is a mismatch nightmare for opposing defenses. With his basketball background, Trautman can go up and get the ball. He also is a Senior Bowl standout who showed that the bump in competition didn’t phase him.
#Patriots Draft Target: Sr. TE, Dayton - Adam Trautman 6’5 250 lbs.— Ryan Spagnoli (@Ryan_Spags) March 5, 2020
Not too many tight ends out there that fit the Patriots like him; blocks well and has great upside in the receiving game. Strong & athletic, ran a 4.79 at the combine.pic.twitter.com/tEKUowbfm0
3rd round, 87th overall: WR Lynn Bowden Jr, Kentucky
There is nothing Bill Belichick loves more than versatility. Bowden (literally) did it all at Kentucky: he played at quarterback, running back, wide receiver and was a return specialist. Once the ball is in his hands, he can go for six at any time. Bowden, who’s listed at 5-foot-11 204 pounds, hauled in 30 passes in 2019 for 348 yards and a score in five games before being switched to quarterback for the remaining eight games of the season. It is no secret the Patriots receiving core lacked athleticism and speed last year so, Bowden steps in and changes that right away — get used to it: “Bubble screen to Bowden from Stidham, Touchdown Patriots!”
#Patriots Draft Target: WR- Kentucky, Lynn Bowden 6'1 200lbs— Ryan Spagnoli (@Ryan_Spags) April 13, 2020
Probably the most versatile player in the draft. Played QB, RB, WR and was a return man. Makes plays no matter where he is. Likely a 3rd/4th rounder that checks the boxes for what BB looks for.pic.twitter.com/pHCDiAS5iH
4th round, 125th overall: S K’Von Wallace, Clemson
Wallace is an extremely sound safety with a high football IQ who loves to get downhill and contribute in the run game and blitz from his safety spot. He is known for setting the tone with his physicality and is a great tackler in the open field. Wallace was a big piece in Clemson’s dominant run playing in the last three National Championship Games and brings a winning attitude to a locker room who is all about that. Patrick Chung 2.0? Right here.
Clemson S K’Von Wallace— Bobby Skinner (@BobbySkinner_) April 13, 2020
5’11” 206 lbs.
•Plays aggressively w/ instincts
•Big hitter when he blitzes or in box
•experience playing man in nickel
•Not afraid to make mistakes
I like what I see out of Wallace. Guy is a baller who doesn’t play tight & leaves it all out there pic.twitter.com/y36PMTbddf
5th round, 163rd overall (via trade with CHI): G Jonah Jackson, Ohio State
With the uncertainty surrounding Joe Thuney’s future in New England — he did sign his franchise tag tender but could be traded or leave in free agency next year — the Patriots select a versatile offensive lineman who has experience at guard, tackle and center. Listed at 6-foot-3 306 pounds, Jackson brings a lot of size and power to the guard position. He spent four years at Rutgers before doing his fifth at Ohio State and earning third team All- American honors. Jackson can be plugged anywhere on the line and he’s going to succeed.
Ohio State LG Jonah Jackson deserves more love. Experience playing all three spots, footwork and lateral quickness, nasty/finisher.— Evan Lazar (@ezlazar) April 2, 2020
Two perfect combo blocks with the center here. First one, works outside and drives to sustain. Second, folds and climbs. #Patriots #NFLDraft pic.twitter.com/rfhsJoZZuD
6th round, 195th overall: WR James Proche, SMU
The Patriots were reportedly “gushing” over Proche after he was one of the standouts at this year’s Senior Bowl. Listed at 5-foot-11, 200 pounds, the 23-year-old provides low risk and a high reward here in the sixth round. He has great hands and body control and offers experience both inside and outside the formation. He can bring some much-needed depth and youth into New England’s receiving group.
#Patriots scouts were reportedly impressed by SMU WR James Proche at the Senior Bowl. He’s got unreal hands and body control to pluck the ball in traffic and contort his body. Varies speeds in his stems and has some wiggle too. Mid-round prospect. pic.twitter.com/OH8xvqVvy8— Evan Lazar (@ezlazar) January 23, 2020
6th round, 199th overall (via trade with LAR): LB Markus Bailey, Purdue
Insert your late-round steal by the Patriots here and it’s ironic it comes at pick 199: Bailey has reportedly had multiple virtual pre-draft meetings with the Patriots and although he may be deemed as a bit undersized for your prototypical New England linebacker at 6-foot-0, 235 pounds, he can make plays and cover sideline-to-sideline. Bailey has great athleticism and can make plays versus both the run and the pass.
Video and audio breakdown on LB Markus Bailey from Purdue. Doesn't make the tackle but he's a big reason to why this play only goes for about 3 or 4 yards. Engages and doesn't backdown from the block. Head is positioned on the outside + closes down to the sideline. pic.twitter.com/dFuIBgdQoa— Russell Brown (@RussNFLDraft) April 7, 2020
7th round, 230th overall: K Rodrigo Blankenship, Georgia
Patriots fans, your dream has come true. After the Patriots cut ties with their franchise leader in points scored, Stephen Gostkowski, it is no secret that they need a new kicker. Blankenship’s leg has some power and accuracy — nailing 93% of his kicks from under 40 yards during his tenure at Georgia — and he also has great fundamentals and can make kicks from either hash-mark.
7th round, 241st overall: QB Nate Stanley, Iowa
The Patriots have made it seem like the torch is being passed on from Tom Brady to Jarrett Stidham, and with the current cap space and cutting Cody Kessler a few weeks back, all signs point to the Patriots selecting a quarterback in this year’s draft. The question is where, and in this scenario the seventh-round is the answer. Stanley has a strong arm and makes the right decisions, projecting as a long-term backup at the next level.