Patriots Fans Split Over 2nd-Round Pick

Tyquan Thornton

Getty Tyquan Thornton

O

nce again, New England Patriots fans were left scratching their head over New England’s selection in the 2022 NFL Draft.

After selecting Cole Strange in the first round, New England continued to improve on offense, this time selecting Tyquan Thornton out of Baylor.

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The Patriots once again made a trade with the Kansas City Chiefs to trade up and get Thornton. New England got the 50th overall pick in exchange for the 54th and 158th overall pick. Making a deal was necessary as Doug Kyed reported the Pittsburgh Steelers were also interested in the wide receiver.

Thornton spent four seasons at Baylor where he racked up 143 receptions, 2,242 yards, and 19 touchdowns. He is 10th on Baylor’s all-time career receiving yards list and tied for 8th in touchdowns. The 22-year-old also also lands at 14th in terms of career receptions at the school.

In 2021, Thornton’s performance was good enough to land him on the All-Big 12 second team. He had 62 receptions and 10 touchdowns.

Draft experts were puzzled with the selection with Thornton projected to be drafted on Day 3. Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network had Thronton ranked outisde of his top 150 prospects. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler had Thronton being selected in the fifth round.

The wide receiver received a 5.97 prospect grade from NFL.com which projects him to be an average backup or special-teams player.

Thornton’s greatest asset is his speed. He ran a 4.28-second 40-yard dash at the scouting combine. He unofficialy ran a 4.21-second 40-yard dash which would have been the fastest in combine history.

Lance Zierlein stated that there is a lot to like about Thornton’s game leading up to the NFL Draft.

“He’s a vertical threat with the speed and poise to win deep and has an excellent feel for maintaining spacing when working against zone coverage,” Zierlein said.

Still there are some concerns about Thornton’s build.

“He’s skinny and linear, which is a bad combination in defeating strong press-man corners on the next level,” Zierlein said. “The poise and catch radius will work in his favor, but the success rate on contested catches will be lower than teams like, based upon his history and physical traits. Wideouts with his size profile have struggled mightily to succeed in the league, but Thornton’s speed and talent make him worthy of a shot on Day 3.”

Just like on Thursday night, Patriots fans had a lot to say about the pick.


The Good

Some fans were excited with the selection of the wide receiver and thought the selection was a long time coming.

Other fans thought he was the perfect target for Mac Jones.


The Bad

While some fans were excited with the pick, others wern’t as pleased. Some fans were still upset that New England hadn’t taken Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean.

Other fans were left wondering about Bill Belichick’s decison-making skills.

With the Patriots stacked at wide receiver with the likes of Kendrick Bourne, DeVante Parker, and Jakobi Meyers, Thornton will have plenty of guys to learn from but it will be interesting to see how much he is on the field in his rookie season.

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