Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots have had a fair amount of regular-season success over the last few years, but they haven’t been as successful when it comes to restocking the cupboards in the draft. Belichick’s scouting eye took another hit after Thursday’s Jarrett Stidham news.
Stidham was traded away to the Las Vegas Raiders (who are currently coached and operated by former Patriots) in exchange for a late-round draft pick swap. Stidham’s failure to stick on the roster illustrated just how bad Belichick’s 2019 draft class was when examined closely.
After using his two top picks on troubled wide receiver N’Keal Harry and cornerback Joejuan Williams, Belichick added yet another player that did not factor into the long-term plans by picking up defensive end Chase Winovich. Nearly half of the 2019 class is not on the current roster and you can expect more to go in the coming months.
Belichick should be commended for adding Damien Harris to the equation, as he has proven to be one of the best young running backs in the AFC. Outside of that, this class is shaping up to be one of the worst we have ever seen from Belichick in his NFL tenure.
The New England Patriots messed up in 2019 NFL Draft
Let’s look at this class pick by pick. Both Harry and Williams have no path to immediate playing time despite remaining on the roster. Winovich looked like a stud after piling up 11 sacks in his first two seasons, but his playing time fell off in 2021 and he was traded to the Browns.
The Harris pick is fine. Good job, Bill! After that, Yodny Cajuste has just two starts to his name. Hjalte Froholdt is currently a backup in Cleveland, and Stidham was recently dealt away. After missing all of 2021 with injuries, Byron Cowart lost all of his momentum after a tremendous 2020 campaign.
Punter Jake Bailey has been more than acceptable, but should Belichick really be commended for his ability to scout punter talent at the expense of skill positions? Ken Webster didn’t even make the final roster, though he had a cup of coffee with Miami before washing out of the league.
The Patriots appeared to nail it in 2021 by adding Mac Jones and Christian Barmore, but it’s hard to declare Belichick’s magic touch in the draft as fully restored after a controversial 2022 class. Considering how both 2019 and 2020 are shaking out, Belichick’s draft misses could come back to bite this team.