The New England Patriots have been mentioned as a potential destination for many of the top quarterback prospects in this draft, and Ohio State’s Justin Fields could the one guy who the Patriots would be willing to sacrifice years of draft capital in order to obtain.
Fields only lost two games in college, has displayed arm strength and accuracy to all levels of the field, and might be the best pure runner in this class at his position.
For reasons unknown, Fields’ stock has started to slip, giving the Pats renewed hope he could be wearing red, white, and navy next season.
Fields hopes to cement himself as either the second- or third-best quarterback in this draft class at another Pro Day, where he hopes his arm talent will wow prospective teams.
The Patriots are interested, but they need to line up behind a few other teams also in need of a quarterback, as anyone with even a passing interest in a new signal-caller lined up to watch him, too.
Even though the Jets are likely taking BYU’s Zach Wilson at No. 2, they were in attendance, as were the San Francisco 49ers, holders of the No. 3 pick in this draft. The Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, and Denver Broncos, all of whom could conceivably use their Top 10 pick on a quarterback, also got a look at him.
Justin Fields might be out of reach for the Patriots.
Fields looks like an ideal fit for San Francisco at pick No. 3, but Alabama’s Mac Jones has been strongly linked to the 49ers. However, considering how Fields is the premier athlete and how Jimmy Garoppolo’s lack of athletic ability is one of the reasons the 49ers are even in this position, San Francisco would be a logical destination for Fields.
If the Jones pick does indeed have some fire behind it, the next logical destination for Fields could be the Broncos, who aren’t totally sold on Drew Lock. It seems the Patriots would need to do something that is antithetical to the Bill Belichick way and trade up in the draft in order to secure the rights to Fields.
Fields would give the Patriots the athletic ability and arm strength that Cam Newton offers while presenting the accuracy and quick decision-making Belichick values in a quarterback. The combination of the two could set the Patriots up nicely for the next decade.
The Patriots would love nothing more than Fields somehow falling to them at No. 15, but it looks like hoping that reality comes to pass is getting more unlikely by the day. Fields has the highest ceiling of any non-Trevor Lawrence passer in this draft, and New England should consider getting creative with regard to finding a way to swipe him up.