New England Patriots 2021 NFL Draft Recapby Charlie Parent May 2, 2021 0 comments
Coming off of an aggressive free agency, the New England Patriots looked to build on an already super strong offseason with this year’s draft. The Patriots struck early on with the selection of quarterback Mac Jones to be their future franchise signal-caller. Then in the later rounds, they turned to more needs and players that will fill positions right away. The Patriots were also busy in the trade market as they sent picks 46, 122, and 139 to the Cincinnati Bengals for pick 38.
Make sure to check out all of our 2021 NFL Draft Team Recaps.
Best Pick: Mac Jones (Round 1, Pick 15)
With the future of the quarterback situation in New England still up in the air, the Patriots lucked out with the slide of quarterbacks in the first round. After weeks of speculation that the Patriots would move up to select a quarterback, they don’t have to give up anything and still take their franchise guy. Bill Belichick already came out and stated that Cam Newton will be the starter, as presumed, and that Jones will be given his shot to compete when he’s ready. Overall, not having to trade up for a guy with great upside who will get to learn from the greatest coach in history is an absolutely phenomenal pick.
For more on Jones, check out our scouting report here.
Worst Pick: Rhamondre Stevenson (Round 4, Pick 120)
It’s very hard to find a bad pick in this Patriots class. Taking Stevenson wasn’t a horrible selection, but it wasn’t great. Stevenson is a really good football player but the need for a running back is a bit questionable. This pick basically writes the ship for Sony Michel as the Patriots bring in another early-down back and continue to work the power game. Stevenson has already drawn some LeGarrette Blount comparisons, but in a running back by committee situation, it’ll certainly hard to come even close to the production Blount had. Overall, this is really not a bad pick, just the worst one out of so many good ones.
For more on Stevenson, check out our scouting report here.
Sleeper Pick: Ronnie Perkins (Round 3, Pick 96)
It’s really hard not to put the Christian Barmore pick here but for where Perkins was selected, this is an incredible value pick. The Patriots have completely turned around their pass rush issues in one offseason. They have Matt Judon, Chase Winovich, Josh Uche, and now a strictly power guy in Perkins to provide versatility in the attack. Perkins should be able to carve out a really nice role for himself as the rest of the pass-rushers are mostly speed and finesse players. Many thought Perkins would go a lot earlier than this but he happened to fall right into Belichick’s awaiting arms.
For more on Perkins, check out our scouting report here.
The Patriots did a little bit of everything in this draft. They addressed the future, fixed their pass-rush, and even picked up some special teams depth in Joshuah Bledsoe. New England has now filled pretty much every need they once had coming into this offseason and more. This is an exceptional draft from Belichick and one that he desperately needed.
Overall Grade: A