The New England Patriots have made a move to shore up their secondary. On Thursday, NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reported the Patriots were close to completing a trade for 2021 fifth-round pick Shaun Wade from the Baltimore Ravens.
Clearly, Wade was a guy the Patriots liked during the pre-draft process, but were unable to draft him. They saw an opportunity to bring him in and got it done.
Shaun Wade Scouting Report and Trade Details
The Patriots surrendered a fifth and seventh-round pick to the Ravens to secure Wade’s services, per NFL analyst Aaron Wilson.
Wade doesn’t project as a starter, but he looks like a strong fit for one of the Patriots’ signature positions in the secondary.
What Kind of Player is Shaun Wade?
Wade stands 6’1″ and weighs 194 pounds, but it appears the Patriots might be inclined to use him as a nickel corner, or even similarly to the way Patrick Chung was used during his esteemed run with the Patriots.
Chung played a role that was a bit of a hybrid. It’s also what the newly signed Jalen Mills is set to do this season. If you pay attention to Wade’s scouting reports when he came out of Ohio State, it sounds like a role that fits him.
Here is what Crabby of The Draft Network wrote:
Ohio State defensive back Shaun Wade will be a hotly contested prospect after seeing his fair share of successes and failures with the Buckeyes program. Wade burst onto the scene as a dynamic freshman and starred in a nickel corner role for a Buckeyes secondary that was loaded with talent throughout the course of his first two seasons in Columbus. But Wade’s junior season saw a transition to the perimeter and a fair share of struggles with life on the outside, calling into question whether or not Wade can play on the boundary and whether or not he’s destined for a role as a nickel or safety. Based on Wade’s 2020 play, a transition to strong safety feels like a safe bet to maximize his athletic skills, length, and hitting power without tasking him to cover too much ground or play on an island in coverage. Wade’s ceiling really shines when he’s able to be protected vertically, so even if he went into the pros as a cornerback, he’d be best suited to play in a two-deep variation. In all, Wade has plenty of potential; but after three seasons in Columbus, he feels no closer to reaching it and a position change may be his best ticket to getting there.
Ideal Role: Base defense strong safety—big nickel coverage option.
Scheme Fit: Wade has the length and athleticism to play man and trigger skills and size to play in zone. He projects favorably to multiple schemes, but defenses that utilize three safeties often feels like the best fit.
If Wade’s skill set pans out, he could be a valuable member of the team in 2021.
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