The Patriots have seven selections in the upcoming 2024 NFL draft. Most of the buzz will be around what they will do with the third overall pick, rightfully so, because they are rumored to select a quarterback a new franchise quarterback the pick. The good news for the Patriots is that they may not necessarily need to draft a quarterback to win the draft.
Not too long ago, 24 years to be exact, the Patriots struck gold in the later rounds of the NFL draft when they selected a pudgy quarterback out of Michigan in the sixth round with the 199th pick. That player went on to be Tom Brady and subsequently proved to the NFL that you don't need to be a first-round pick to be a successful quarterback in the NFL.
Can lightning strike twice? Is it possible?
Although the Patriots do not have the 199th pick in this year's draft, they do have a few picks in the later rounds. The hope is that one of those picks will yield a player of Tom Brady's caliber, regardless of position.
Everyone is enamored with the top three quarterbacks in the draft: Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, and Jayden Daniels. All of them are incredibly talented and have sky-high potential. The second tier of quarterbacks consists of Michael Penix Jr., J.J. McCarthy, and Bo Nix. These three get mixed reviews, as their projections fall between mid-to-late first and second rounds. Even still, there is more talent to be found in the depths of the draft.
We will explore four quarterbacks with the potential to be drafted by the Patriots in the later rounds, also known as the third-tier quarterbacks or even the afterthoughts. Let's not get too carried away by getting carried away! Next Tom Brady, here we come.
Quarterback 1: Joe Milton, Tennessee
Joe Milton has a cannon for an arm, making it very easy to see why scouts are so enticed by what he has to offer. He won't be an early pick, but he will get drafted and provide a lot of value for the team drafting him. So why not the Patriots?
Milton is a big 6'5" quarterback with a strong arm and possesses good athleticism for the position, making him worth a flier. During his time at Tennessee, Milton showed he could pick apart defenses when given time. The problem is when plays break down.
His throwing on the run could use some tweaking, but he possesses enough accuracy from within the pocket to believe that there is legitimate potential there. Milton could be an excellent consolation prize if the Patriots forgo a quarterback in the first round.
The New England Patriots have the opportunity to acquire a highly talented quarterback with exceptional arm skills who could become an even greater asset to the team.