The 2021 NFL Draft is less than three weeks away and nobody really has an inside track in terms of knowing what the New England Patriots are planning to do with the No. 15 overall pick.
Could they hold serve and draft versatile linebacker Micah Parsons to be their defensive anchor of the future? What about adding some insurance at cornerback in the form of Jaycee Horn if they decide to trade Stephon Gilmore?
The Patriots could choose either of those scenarios. However, all signs are seemingly pointing to them trading up to draft a quarterback.
After all, Cam Newton re-signed to a one-year deal and they have no successor lined up to replace him after next season.
The way things are looking, only three teams (the Jaguars, 49ers and Jets) are surefire bets to draft a quarterback. The rest of the squads inside the top 15 seem to have their starters penciled in for 2021, meaning New England could get its hands on one of the top prospects.
What will be crucial in determining that, however, is what the Broncos decide to do with the ninth overall pick.
To be more specific, Patriots fans should be hoping that they swoop in and make a deal for Teddy Bridgewater after the latest blockbuster trade.
The Patriots should be hoping the Broncos trade for Teddy Bridgewater.
The Broncos trading for Bridgewater would presumably take them out of the running to draft a gunslinger, which would significantly bolster New England’s chances of drafting either one of Mac Jones, Justin Fields, or Trey Lance, depending on who the 49ers draft third overall.
The Panthers, of course, acquired Sam Darnold on Monday and have given Bridgewater the freedom to talk with teams to facilitate a potential trade. Though Carolina is open to the idea of keeping the 28-year-old, they feel like they owe it to him to have a say in his future.
Given their evident lack of conviction in Drew Lock, who finished dead last in the league in both completion percentage (57.3%) and interceptions (15) last season, the Broncos come to mind as a potential landing spot for Bridgewater.
On top of that, the moves Denver has made in free agency — re-signing safety tandem Justin Simmons and Kareem Jackson, retaining defensive lineman Shelby Harris, and signing star cornerback Kyle Fuller — suggests they intend on competing next season around a revamped defense of some kind.
You know, like the good old days of late-career Peyton Manning.
It goes without saying that deploying a rookie quarterback not named Trevor Lawrence would be detrimental for a team with playoff aspirations. While Bridgewater isn’t a world-beater, he’s proven capable of churning out wins with an above-average roster.
We’re not saying Bridgewater to the Broncos is a lock to happen, but it’s undoubtedly the scenario Patriots fans should be pulling for following Carolina’s surprise acquisition of Darnold. If that happens, New England would be in pole position to nab its quarterback of the future.