Round 3, Pick 91: S Justin Simmons
Original Pick: QB Jacoby Brissett
The Denver Broncos plucked Boston College safety Justin Simmons with the 98th pick in the 2016 draft. Despite no need at the position, the uber-athletic 6-foot-3 defensive back would have been a solid special teamer for the Patriots.
In his rookie season, Simmons tallied 24 total tackles, two interceptions, four pass breakups, and one sack. In Week 10, he made a leaping field goal block versus the New Orleans Saints which was returned by Denver to win the game.
At the Scouting Combine, Simmons posted a 40-inch vertical jump and 126-inch broad jump. WEEI’s Ryan Hannable (@RyanHannable) Tweeted that the Patriots hosted the safety for a visit prior to the draft.
Round 3, Pick 96: CB Tavon Young
Original Pick: DT Vincent Valentine
With the 104th overall pick in the 2016 draft, the Baltimore Ravens took 5-foot-9 cornerback, Tavon Young. After originally taking a corner in the second round, New England waits until the fourth to address the position.
Young put on a strong rookie campaign, collecting 50 total tackles, two interceptions, and eight pass breakups in 16 games. Like Cyrus Jones, Young’s size would limit him to slot duties in New England, however, NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein (@LanceZierlein) writes in his ‘Draft Profile’:
"” [Young] plays bigger and more physically than his listed height/weight.” and “he does play with decent ball skills and competes hard against consistently bigger targets.” – Lance Zierlein"