Draft Experts React to Patriots 2022 NFL Draft Class

New England Patriots

Getty New England Patriots

T

he 2022 NFL Draft has come to an end and even though we are just days removed from the selections, grades have already been handed out and the New England Patriots will have some explaining to do.

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New England made 10 selections in this year’s draft. On Day 1, the Patriots surprised the world by drafting offensive lineman Cole Strange. The offensive picks continued on Day 2 with New England selecting wide receiver Tyquan Thornton in Round 2. In Round 3, the Pats switched to the other side of the ball selecting defensive back Marcus Jones.

The Patriots made most of their selections on Day 3 selecting Jack Jones, Pierre Strong Jr., Bailey Zappe, Kevin Harris, Sam Roberts, Chasen Hines, and Andrew Struber in round four through seven.

With several picks scratching the head of draft experts, they had plenty to say about New England’s 2022 draft class.


The Good

While some experts were left puzzled by New England’s draft, some thought that the team did quite well.

Connor Orr of Sports Illustrated also gave New England a B-.

“Bill Belichick selected the fastest receiver and running back in the class, signaling an offensive shift we’ve already seen a year in the making,” Orr said.


The Bad

Unfortunately for New England, a whole lot of experts thought that they had a poor draft. USA Today gave the Patriots a D-.

“I’m not gonna lie, I have no idea what the Pats were doing here,” they wrote. “OL Cole Strange is a solid prospect, but was easily the most shocking reach of the firsts round. WR Tyquan Thornton has elite speed, but he’s more track star than football player right now, and made more sense on Day 3. CB Marcus Jones in the third round is the only pick that made any sense from a value/team need standpoint.”

Pro Football Focus gave the Patriots a D while SB Nation also gave New England a D+.

“Nothing will make you doubt yourself like a Patriots draft,” they wrote. “It’s impossible to predict anything. There are times they make these weird picks like Cole Strange and they turn into All-Pros, then others when they flame out and we kinda ignore it because of Bill Belichick’s brilliance. That said, this was a fairly weak draft. I like the value of Strong, but I’m really confused taking a fourth round quarterback to be a backup for Mac Jones.”

While not as negative as other grades, Pro Football Network thought that New England did a poor job drafting for value.

“The Patriots will do things their own way,” they said. “That’s always been the case, and few drafts have emphasized that more than this one. Cole Strange, Tyquan Thornton, and Marcus Jones were all sizable reaches relative to their expected landing spots. But all three have the upside to potentially be worth those picks.”

“Still, if we’re grading for perceived value in the present day, the Patriots get knocked a little bit. Day 3 didn’t help a ton. Sam Roberts and Chasen Hines were excellent picks late, and Pierre Strong Jr. provides a dynamic element to the RB room. But overall, the Patriots class could’ve covered more ground.”

With minicamp yet to begin, there is a chance that some players surprise experts. The last time that the Patriots drafted an offensive guard in the first round, they ended up with Logan Mankins. New England was also able to sure up their depth at cornerback after the departure of J.C. Jackson.

But right now fans and experts alike are wondering what the Patriots were thinking in terms of the 2022 NFL Draft class.

 

 

 

 

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