Patriots Mock Draft: Pats crush it in this post-Belichick 3-round draft

Patriots address their greatest needs in an atypical draft.

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In April, the New England Patriots will be approaching their first draft without Bill Belichick as their de facto General Manager in nearly a quarter century. His drafts always looked better when the team had Tom Brady at the helm. Yet, he was never a top drafter and in recent years, his performances had been dismal. Brady covered up so many personnel shortcomings.

Now, a new era is beginning in Foxborough even though the Belichick apparatus still surprisingly and somewhat confoundingly remains at the helm. This is certainly questionable since this is a defining draft that will either set a new more positive tone or continue the malaise of recent years. Not bringing in a new, fresh perspective has to rank as another in a long line of perplexing, if not downright appalling, decisions by Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

All that notwithstanding, the draft will conducted in the draft room at Gillette Stadium by someone, and whoever it may be has to get this one right. Like the Belichick drafts since 2019, there is no great safety valve to bail the selectors out from the team's often questionable, if not downright, head-scratching drafting.

One can only hope that, for once, they will conduct a "consensus" draft, as they did in 2023 when they hit nicely on their first two picks), Christian Gonzalez and Keion White. They then went off the rails as usual and botched much of the rest of the draft, both in who they drafted and who they didn't, a.k.a. any offensive tackles.

This three-round mock draft will be conducted in a consensus fashion. There will be no great reaches like those in the recent past for Cole Strange, Tyquan Thornton, Marte Mapu, Chad Ryland, and a whole host of others who've contributed far less than they should have with their draft statuses. No draft is flawless with hits on all the picks. Yet, drafting in a consensus fashion will always deliver the best opportunity to succeed. And that's what will happen here.

Note: Thanks to for the draft simulator.