New England's obsession with the 2024 NFL Draft is heating up now that there is just one game left to be played this season. The Patriots currently hold the third overall pick, putting them in a prime position to select their next franchise quarterback if that's the route they choose to go. Although their positioning can change between now and the end of Week 18, they should only fall as low as the fifth pick, which is still not a bad place to be.
We know the Bears have already locked up the No. 1 pick via the Panthers, so the Patriots still have a slight chance to jump into the second pick based on the results of this upcoming week of games. However, because the Cardinals have the same record and can't close the door on potentially jumping ahead of them in the draft, the latest news out of Arizona may make the possibility of that happening a little less worrisome for fans wanting the highest pick for the Patriots.
There has been a lot of speculation about whether the Bears will take a quarterback since they still have Justin Fields, and his performance as of late has been that of a good player. On top of that, several of his teammates have publicly shared their support for him as the team's QB1, which may also indicate what's going on behind closed doors.
The Commanders are ahead of the Patriots right now, and even though Sam Howell has shown some phenomenal play this year, Washington cannot be ruled out of contention for a quarterback. But if the Bears decide to go with a receiver, that means just one signal caller would be off the board by the time New England picks.
What if the Cardinals move ahead of them, though?
Kyler Murray's stance with Arizona has been a bit all over the place. He signed a massive contract that received a lot of criticism due to his inconsistency and habit of finishing seasons poorly. However, the staff appears to be all in on keeping him as the guy for years to come, which head coach Jonathan Gannon stated during his appearance on a Phoenix radio show this week.
Arizona's plans to keep Kyler Murray could help the Patriots draft hopes
He may not be the general manager at the end of the day, but hearing Gannon's firm assertion that Murray is and will remain their franchise quarterback speaks volumes. This means they'll likely look at other positions to draft or be far more open to trading down in the first round with a quarterback-needy team.
If they move ahead of the Patriots, they could become a trade partner if they want to move up and get the quarterback they like. That could also be the case with the Bears, who are rumored to be open to trading out of the first pick.
If New England wants to go all in on a roster makeover and do what it takes to get a quarterback they believe is a franchise changer, they could have two teams to contact before or on draft day.