By most accounts, the New England Patriots had a strong 2020 NFL Draft.
They plugged several gaps, and while they didn’t draft a QB (they did address the position on the undrafted free-agent market) the Patriots shored up both sides of the ball and even added some contributors on special teams.
Here are all of the Patriots’ picks and some information on all of them.
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Patriots’ Second-Round Picks
- No. 37 overall: S – Kyle Dugger – Lenoir-Rhyne – At this point, Dugger is positioned to be the crown jewel of the Patriots’ 2020 draft class. The team traded out of its No. 23 pick into the second round and it selected Dugger at that point after scouting him at tiny Lenoir-Rhyne as early as this past fall. He’s a plus-athlete with star potential who is expected to start as a rookie and could even be a punt returner.
- No. 60 overall: LB – Josh Uche – Michigan – He’ll be joining former college teammate and 2019 Patriots draftee Chase Winovich in New England. Like Winovich, Uche specializes in pass rushing and his ceiling appears to be close to former sack master Elvis Dumervil, but his floor could be a bust level. We’ll find out.
Patriots’ Third Round Picks
- No. 87 overall: LB – Anfernee Jennings – Alabama – The Crimson Tide is a signature Nick Saban/Bill Belichick linebacker with a good deal of versatility and some serious leadership qualities. He might be the guy who ultimately supplants Dont’a Hightower.
- No. 91 overall: TE – Devin Asiasi – UCLA – Many expected the Patriots to go for Dayton’s Adam Trautman, but with the Flyers’ tight end still on the board, New England elected to go with the former Bruins’ star. Asiasi has excellent athleticism and he could be a weapon up the seams.
- No. 101 overall: TE – Dalton Keene – Va. Tech – In the mold of H-Backs like Trey Burton or Frank Wycheck, Keene could offer the Patriots a one-two punch a tight end, unlike anything they’ve had since Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez were causing defenses to gameplan for the unique attack.
Patriots’ Fifth-Round Picks
- No. 159 overall: K – Justin Rohrwasser – Marshall – Rohrwasser will be replacing Stephen Gostkowski for the long-term–at least that’s the plan. While everyone should be talking about Rohrwasser’s ability to fill the shoes of a legend, more are discussing some troubling tattoos the Conference USA Special Teams Player of the Year has on his arm. He’s said he will have the tattoos covered, but Rohrwasser is at the center of the Patriots’ first controversy of 2020.
Patriots’ Sixth-Round Picks
- No. 182 overall: G – Michael Onwenu – Michigan – The Patriots waited until the late rounds to address its depth issues on the O-Line. However, it heads back to Ann Arbor for another contributor. Onwenu is a massively strong human being with some development still yet to take place in his game, but he should get an opportunity to improve.
- No. 195 overall: G – Justin Herron – Wake Forest – The upside on Herron is high. If you had to tab one of the Patriots’ late-round picks like the one with the highest ceiling, it would be the uber-athletic Herron. He’s a basketball-like athlete in a guard’s body, but he might even be able to develop into a right tackle at the top end of his ceiling.
- No. 204 overall: LB – Cassh Maluia – Wyoming – Speed and athleticism are Maluia’s calling card. At the least, he should be able to contribute as a special teamer, but he has some technique and instinct flaws that might prevent him from making it onto the field on defense.
Patriots’ Seventh-Round Picks
- No. 230 overall: C – Dustin Woodard – Memphis – The last pick of the draft for the Patriots is Woodard, the stalwart Memphis center. He helped to power a decent Tigers offense, and there is a possibility that he could have been made to look better with more effective play from the QB position. In any case, Woodard will get a chance to make the team.