The New England Patriots have to hit the nail on the head with their 2023 NFL Draft. They have notable holes to fill and have high picks to fill them.
In about a month, the 2023 NFL Draft will be upon us. The Pats have the 14th overall pick and should have their shot at a top prospect. They have first round needs at cornerback, tackle, and wide receiver, but some would argue that they should simply take the best player available.
The team has not had luck drafting wide receivers, but they should keep taking swings. They did address the tackle position in free agency but could use their top pick on that position too.
Their other major need is at cornerback. Keeping the defense as solid as possible is a smart idea considering we have no idea how the offense will do in 2023.
New England Patriots’ Mock Draft: Filling major holes
14th overall: Jordan Addison, WR, USC
Is this the year that the Patriots nail it with their wide receiver draft pick? The team brought in JuJu Smith-Schuster to replace the departed Jakobi Meyers and could see a breakout year from Tyquan Thornton. If Addison can play, the Pats all of a sudden have a decent WR room.
46th overall: DJ Turner, CB, Michigan
The next selection hits on another huge need for the New England Patriots in explosive cornerback DJ Turner. Re-signing Jonathan Jones was a smart move, but the team still needs to add a couple of CBs this offseason.
Turner is of adequate size and should be a week one starter for the team.
76th overall: Blake Freeland, OT, BYU
The next selection is a mountain of a man at offensive tackle in Blake Freeland. Freeland possesses 10 inch hands and 33 7/8th inch arms. This is more of a developmental selection, which fits perfectly for the Patriots timeline, I think.
107th overall: Henry To’o To’o, LB, Alabama
Continue to beef up the defense with Henry To’o To’o. He’s a shifty athlete who moves well laterally and perhaps could be a consistent force in the middle of the defense for the Pats.
117th overall: Jaquelin Roy, DT, LSU
135th overall: Bryce Ford-Wheaton, WR, West Virginia
184th overall: Jay Ward, S, LSU
187th overall: Payne Durham, TE, Purdue
192nd overall: Ronnie Bell, WR Michigan
210th overall: Aidan O’Connell, QB, Purdue
245th overall: Karl Brooks, DT, Bowling Green
The remaining picks by the Pats include beefing up the defensive front and adding more talent on offense. The idea here, to me is that you keep taking shots on players, certain positions, until one of them sticks.
Maybe Ronnie Bell is the next great receiver in the NFL. Even though the Pats have not been good at drafting wide receivers, for example, does not mean they should stop.
They also added an interesting pick, Aidan O’Connell, with their second to last selection.
I’m a fan of this draft as I think it hits on the major needs for the team.