Bill Belichick’s Christian Barmore quote proves draft worries were wrong

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 17: Christian Barmore #90 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 17: Christian Barmore #90 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

The New England Patriots leaned heavily on Nick Saban’s talent pool at Alabama during the 2021 NFL Draft, as both of their first few selections were Crimson Tide stars.

After they identified a potential franchise quarterback in Mac Jones, Bill Belichick snagged defensive tackle Christian Barmore in the second round. 

Barmore’s slide was a bit jarring considering he was regarded by many as the best interior pass rusher in this draft class.

Due to some apparent concerns about his makeup behind the scenes, Barmore fell to a spot that led Belichick to pounce on him.

On the surface, this looked like a complete steal for the Patriots. Not only was Barmore dominating the SEC by proving his ability to pressure the quarterback, but he did so in the context of winning games against elite competition week in and week out. So far, that play has reappeared on Sunday afternoons.

After a dominant win against the Carolina Panthers, the normally stoic and gruff Belichick had an extensive response in praise of Barmore, who said that the rookie is putting in extra work by getting in early and staying late.

Christian Barmore is impressing the Patriots.

According to Senior Bowl director Jim Nagy, Barmore was graded as a Top-15 player by multiple teams during the draft process, but concerns about his maturity helped him slip into the second round. Based on what Belichick has said, it sounds like Barmore is dispelling the criticism tagged to him pre-draft.

Since Week 4, Barmore has played over half of the defensive snaps in every single game. With Chase Winovich starting to fall out of favor and Ronnie Perkins not making much of an impact, that goes to show Belichick is not going to just hand anyone snaps to anyone unless they earn it.

Barmore might not have the gaudiest box score stats at the moment, but even a basic examination of Patriots tape shows that he has taken some big steps forward from his first few games. The pass rush skill is popping, and the run defense is getting better each week.

Getting deemed as immature can be a killer for a player’s draft stock since it so often makes it easy for teams to shy away. Based on how Barmore has conducted himself off the field and how that has translated to his play on it, Belichick and the Patriots appear to have proven everyone passing on Barmore did so due because of a false red flag.