With a new era set to begin in New England, with Bill Belichick starting fresh elsewhere in the league and Jerod Mayo stepping up into his place, hypothesizing how the upcoming draft can go is a lot more intriguing. Typically, the way it was handled was relatively predictable, given Belichick's fascination with going against the grain in almost every way possible.
Now, we go into the draft a bit blind, not knowing how Mayo or a potential new general manager will conduct it this year.
The new head coach has already spoken about the Patriots' plans for the third overall selection, seemingly hinting at taking a quarterback since it is the most important position on the team. Most fans agree it is the best route to take, if not the only one. But what if they didn't do that?
What if they went with a touted generational receiver instead?
That's where we start in this 7-round mock draft without trades.
Based on having a top-3 pick in a draft when they need a quarterback of the future, the consensus has concluded that taking a quarterback is the only suitable pick here. Because Drake Maye and Caleb Williams are projected to be off the board with the first two picks, that means the Patriots would have to choose from Jayden Daniels and any other quarterback that may climb the ranks in the next couple of months.
Or they could go with the best receiver of the class, if not the best talent in the last several years, in Marvin Harrison Jr.
That may not be what is considered the best choice to some, but how can the Patriots, who have been horrible with evaluating receiving talent and signing top free agents, pass on a guy like Harrison if he's still on the board?
He would instantly make the offense more explosive, no matter who the quarterback was, and would be locked down for at least four seasons on a rookie contract, which is much cheaper than trading for a top receiver.