Patriots 7-round Mock Draft: Prioritizing the offense will bring massive improvements

Rose Bowl Game - Alabama v Michigan
Rose Bowl Game - Alabama v Michigan / Ryan Kang/GettyImages
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. J.J. McCarthy. player. Patriots 3rd rounder. . 3. 485. J.J. McCarthy. Quarterback.

If the Patriots don't go with a quarterback in the first two rounds, they could get lucky by having an impressive player fall to them in the third round. Maybe that won't happen come April, but because PFF had him available with pick 68, we will just go with it.

It seems pretty clear that neither Mac Jones nor Bailey Zappe is the future for New England, and although they don't take his replacement in this draft until the third round, McCarthy has appeared talented enough to certainly be an upgrade, even if he sits behind a veteran bridge quarterback for the first year or two.

He impressed during his 2023 season, helping to lead the Wolverines to an undefeated season that ended in a win over the number two-ranked Washington Huskies in the CFP National Championship earlier this month.

The opposing quarterback in that game was also available at this point in the mock draft, but because of Michael Penix Jr.'s injury history, it seemed safer to go with McCarthy.

Because of all that he accomplished during his career, PFF has him ranked as the sixth-best quarterback of the 2024 class, which is good news for all those who feel the only way to improve the position is by taking a quarterback higher. But McCarthy has a lot to like and could be the right guy for the new era.