The first question asked by Daniel Jeremiah, an NFL Network analyst, about the Patriots, was about the two pillars of the franchise, not the future pillars.
During a conference call Thursday before the NFL draft of 2019, a reporter asked Jeremiah whether having Bill Belichick and Tom Brady on board allowed New England to take unique risks. in the repechage. The expert, who worked as a scout for three NFL teams before appearing on television, said, "It's still a nice turnaround."
Jeremiah emphasized the continuity of the patriots at the level of the head coach and the quarterback, which allows them to ensure that they do not have to guess at the place of potential choices in the team. He added that as a scout in Baltimore, the Ravens knew a former linebacker's leader, Ray Lewis, would lead any new defensive player.
"I've never been to a team with someone close to what Tom offensively, but man, it's a nice luxury to have," he said.
Even if the Patriots have their first two places under lock and key, they still have holes to fill on the depth chart. New England signed a one-year contract with Austin Seferian-Jenkins and the Buccaneers to replace Rob Gronkowski. For Jeremy, this move released them to look for a receiver-like restricted end in the draft instead of the one that mainly blocks.
"[Alabama tight end] Irv Smith is one that comes to mind as someone who would be a complement to Austin Seferian-Jenkins and would have your guy online to accompany your guy who is moving, "he said.
Jeremiah also named Gronkowski when he was discussing another close end in this year's draft class. T.J. from Iowa Hockenson should be off the table well before the Patriots' No. 1 pick. Jeremiah noted that many analysts have compared him to Gronkowski, but he thinks the best comparison is that of Cowboys, Jason Witten.
"Gronk is a unicorn," he says. "As tall and athletic as he was, I do not know that we'll ever see someone like him."
Iowa has two very tight perspectives, Hockenson and Noah Fant, who are expected to participate in the first round. Jeremiah predicts the teams will sweep both players into the top 20, although he noted that one of these teams could be New England, with their needs at the post and their capital adequacy.
"I would think that if one or the other of the tight ends of Iowa started to fall and drift a bit, it would be a phone call for the Patriots to go get them," he said. he declared.
As for the quarterback position, Jeremiah has named three players that the Patriots could target: Daniel Jones of Duke, Ryan Finley of NC State, and Jarrett Stidham of Auburn. He thinks Jones will not be there when the Patriots are on the clock, but Finley and Stidham are both in the game.
Jeremiah noted that Nick Caserio, director of the Patriots 'staff, attended the Finley Professionals' Day.
"It operates as they wish," said the analyst. "He's smart, he's efficient, he's getting the ball out of his hand quickly, I think he's fine with what Josh McDaniels wants to do and likes to do, I think he'd do a good job. fit there. "
Stidham excelled for Auburn in his first year after moving Baylor, but reached a plateau in the Tigers' 8-5 season last year. Jeremiah explained that the quarterback was one of the "real hidden cards" of the repechage because although he was one of the top five choices in shorts, Stidham did not realize his potential in college. Part of the responsibility for his struggles, said Jeremiah, is to blame for his lack of protection and Auburn's offensive system.
"I think it's going to take a bit of time to develop it, but I could argue that it makes a lot of sense for the Patriots because they've got a little time, no pun, with Tom." There, said Jeremy, "He will not go anywhere for the moment, it would give you a chance to really develop a guy like this with tremendous potential." Really as much as any quarterback in the Stidham is very talented, so it could be a risk. "
The Patriots have 12 choices to play when the repechage begins Thursday at 8 pm, including four in the first seven rounds.