Mac Jones’ Former Teammate Works Out With Patriots

Getty John Metchie III

Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots love players from the Alabama Crimson Tide football program. Mac Jones and Christian Barmore continued the long pipeline between the premier college program and Foxborough last season.

It seems safe to assume we will probably see at least one more of Nick Saban’s players taken by the Patriots in the 2022 NFL Draft. Could one of the next Crimson-Tide turned Patriots be wide receiver John Metchie III?

It appears the seeds are being planted. The Patriots had Metchie in for a workout on April 12 and the 21-year-old has commented on the prospects of reuniting with Mac Jones, his college quarterback in 2020.

John Metchie is Recovering From a Serious Knee Injury

Metchie tore his ACL in the SEC Championship against eventual National Champion Georgia in December, so there are questions about his availability once the 2022 NFL season gets underway.

While the Patriots did acquire DeVante Parker in a trade with AFC East rival Miami Dolphins, New England still has a need for more help at receiver. Adding a young and talented player like Metchie would presumably give the team more depth at a position of need.

Metchie Was Having a Strong Season Before the Injury

Before Metchie tore his ACL, he was just about to finish up a sparkling season with Alabama. He’d already hauled in 96 passes for 1,142 yards and 8 TDs in 2021 as a junior before he went down against the Bulldogs.

That was a marked improvement over his strong sophomore season at Alabama when he was catching passes from Jones and playing second fiddle to DeVonta Smith.

In 2020, Jones and Metchie connected 55 times for 916 yards and 6 TDs. With college combinations like Tua Tagovailoa and Jaylen Waddle as well as Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase having success in the NFL, it wouldn’t be a shock to see the Patriots attempt to discover their own brand of college chemistry and pro symmetry with Jones and Metchie.

The Bleacher Report NFL Scouting Department likens Metchie to former Kansas City Chiefs receiver Byron Pringle who signed with the Chicago Bears this offseason. In Metchie’s scouting report, the B/R expert says Metchie can be a Day 1 contributor if he’s healthy enough to play. However, there are some concerns when it comes to his size (5’11” 187 pounds).

“Metchie has good hands and has the ability to come down with the spectacular catch,” according to the B/R article. “But his average size will crop up when attempting to make a catch in a crowd of defenders, and some drops will come up on contested catches. He can make himself feel like a small target for quarterbacks in tight spaces. Overall, Metchie can be a contributor on Day 1 (pending injury) for most NFL offenses as a Z receiver who can bump inside and out because of his well-rounded skill set and feel for space. But his lack of size and more-solid-than-good athleticism will limit his potential upside as a true force. He can still be a very useful and steady player for a good offense.”

According to B/R, Metchie is seen as a third-round pick. The Patriots currently have the 85th overall selection. Barring Metchie suddenly slipping/rising or the Patriots adding an additional third-round pick if they trade back, that’s when New England would be most likely to select the former Alabama star.

If the Patriots add Metchie, the Patriots’ WR depth chart suddenly looks promising. Parker, Jakobi Meyers, Kendrick Bourne, Nelson Agholor, and Metchie is a pretty solid mix of weapons for Jones, and that’s not including versatile running back options like Rhamondre Stevenson, James White, or tight ends like Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith.

Perhaps we’re about to see a more high-powered Patriots attack in 2022.

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