Patriots Made a Mistake Not Drafting 6’4 ‘Burner’

Getty Simi Fehoko

The New England Patriots drafted Tre Nixon in the seventh round, and they added tight ends Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry in free agency. The Patriots also signed Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne to bolster a weak wide receiver group

Even with all of those additions, you could still make a strong argument the Patriots need more weapons, particularly speedy downfield options for Cam Newton to be at his best.

That’s why Bill Belichick and Co. are going to regret the day they allowed Simi Fehoko to pass during the fifth round of the 2021 NFL Draft.

Fehoko wound up being selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the fifth round with the 179th pick overall. With all due respect to Michigan linebacker Cameron McGrone, whom the Patriots took with the 177th pick, Fehoko seemingly fits a bigger team need.

Fehoko’s Size and Speed Make Him a Potential Big-Play Threat

The Stanford star measured at 6-foot-4 and weighed in at 222 pounds. That’s an ideal size for the wide receiver position.

Fehoko also flashed elite speed when he ran a 4.39 40-yard dash during Stanford’s Pro Day. Fehoko didn’t just shine in workouts; he had his share of moments on the field against Pac-12 competition.

Stanford WR Simi Fehoko Highlights ⬜️🟥 ᴴᴰSubscribe, Like this Video & Turn On Notifications! (↓↓ click show more ↓↓) Instagram: Twitter: Patreon: Facebook: Stanford WR Simi Fehoko Junior 6’4 222 lbs Stanford QB Davis Mills is rising up draft boards & many believe he might be the draft’s biggest QB sleeper. When watching Davis, you can’t help…2021-04-27T01:00:04Z

CLNS’ Evan Lazar recognized the potential fit, calling Fehoko a “burner.”

Keep in mind; all college prospects look great in their highlight reels. That’s the whole point. That said, Fehoko showed stretch-the-field talent in both his sophomore and junior seasons when he averaged 18.6 yards per reception.

It’s perplexing to think that in the fifth round, the Patriots couldn’t find a reason to draft Fehoko over McGrone.

McGrone Will Likely Miss the Entire 2021 Season

Meanwhile, the Patriots will almost certainly have to wait until the 2022 season to see McGrone on the field. McGrone suffered a torn ACL in November 2020, and thus his availability for New England in unknown.

This article wasn’t written with the purpose of disparaging McGrone. He’s a talented young linebacker who is still just 20 years old.

Had he not been injured, he likely wouldn’t have been there for the Patriots to select in the fifth round. If they really wanted him, they might have needed to take him sooner.

Even then, it would have been hard to justify making that decision considering the team already signed the likes of Raekwon McMillan, Kyle Van Noy, Matt Judon, Montravious Adams and Harvey Langi at linebacker. New England will also return Dont’a Hightower after he missed all of 2020 due to concerns about COVID-19, Josh Uche, Chase Winovich, JaWhuan Bentley, Terez Hall, and Anfernee Jennings.

With so many linebackers already on the roster, and with such an obvious need for speedy playmakers on offense, how is an injured McGrone a better pick for the Patriots than Fehoko–or any other wide receiver for that matter?

Hopefully we’ll look back on this pick and McGrone will have turned into a star linebacker who becomes a critical piece on a dominant Patriots defense. If that happens, no one will remember the Patriots only drafted one receiver in 2021–and waited until the seventh round to do it.

It’ll also be easier to forget if Fehoko doesn’t blossom into a legit deep threat with the Cowboys.


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