The New England Patriots currently have the 21st overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and have some positions of need to use it on. I’ve maintained for a while that New England has a ton of good players, but few great or elite ones.
That’s both a good thing and a bad thing. Certain position groups benefit from having a bunch of average or good players, but other groups, like the wide receivers or offensive line, need that game-changer in the unit.
Currently, New England picks 21st overall. They are in a playoff spot as we speak and do have some tough games remaining on their schedule. They plan the Raiders, Bengals, Dolphins, and Bills to close out the 2022 campaign.
I can easily see them only winning one of those games or even losing all four. Either way, I have a hard time seeing the team making the postseason this year, and that’s not a terrible thing, but missing the playoffs two out of three years since Tom Brady’s departure does sound some alarm bells.
Obviously, something is not working if they aren’t making the playoffs with regularity like they used to. The team could use their 21st overall selection, which I think can get higher, on a wide receiver or elite tackle prospect.
Or, if they want to get a bit freaky, they could try and use that pick to pry away an already established wide receiver or tackle from another team. The perfect candidate, and someone who I think will not be playing with his current team in 2023, is DeAndre Hopkins of the Arizona Cardinals.
There may be other candidates as well. Perhaps Brandin Cooks would like a return to New England. We’re a ways away from that, but the Patriots’ first round pick is something to keep an eye on.