Two rookie defensive linemen on the New England Patriots have wasted no time finding a player to learn from.
Despite only having four picks in the 2017 NFL Draft, the New England Patriots did a nice job adding some depth in the trenches.
With their first pick in the third round, the Patriots selected Derek Rivers. Following the selection of Rivers, the Patriots then selected Deatrich Wise in the fourth round. As two young players, both are looking to veterans to model themselves after.
While the Patriots have plenty of veterans on the team, both Rivers and Wise have been working closely with Trey Flowers. Even though Flowers is just barely older than them, he is arguably the best pass-rusher that the Patriots have.
"“His technique, he’s one of the best,” Rivers said to Phil Perry of CSNNE.com. “I just watch him on film and he’s awesome. An awesome dude, nice guy, definitely somebody I can go to and ask questions.”“I watch everything, how he defends the run, just how precise his hands are, how accurate they are in the pass rush, how he gets his hips around — every little thing that helps you get to the QB or make plays.”"
Even though he isn’t a veteran, Flowers is leading by example. As one of the hardest workers on the team, Rivers and Wise are making a smart decision to follow in the footsteps of Flowers.
"“A lot of guys can be a leader,” he said to Perry. “I’m just one of the guys that works hard. If I can help out here and there, I can help out. But a lot of guys in that [defensive line] group, in that room, are definitely leaders. I’ve been in the scheme a little bit longer so if they have questions, I can help out.”"
With Chris Long leaving and Rob Ninkovich being another year older, there will be opportunities for Rivers and Wise.
While Flowers might be the best pass-rusher on the team, he can certainly use some help on the defensive line. Heading into 2017, Rivers and Wise could be players that help him get after the quarterback.