New England Patriots 2017 Draft Review

3rd/83 Derek Rivers, DE

Ht.: 6-4 Wt.: 248 School: Youngstown State

New England has made a point to upgrade their pass rush this offseason trading for Kony Ealy but lack that bendy edge rusher to complete the power insider rushers they have. Rivers dominated FCS competition but showed at the Senior Bowl he was able to up his game against top competition. Rivers will be used as sub package edge rusher but could earn a starting role in year two.

 

3rd/85 Antonio Garcia, OT

Ht.: 6’6 Wt.: 304 School: Troy

Garcia fell to the end of the third round because he lacks good arm length and is light for the position. However, he makes up for those weaknesses with quick footwork and balance that allows him to mirror pass rushers while a compact punch and feistiness aid him in the run game. With Nate Solder entering the final year of his contract Garcia will be developed and looked at as the heir apparent.

 

4th/131 Deatrich Wise, DE

Ht.: 6-5 Wt.: 274 School: Arkansas

Despite only starting ten games in his career at Arkansas Wise was a team captain in his senior year. Wise has a good frame with long arms that allow him to get leverage against tackles and use his hands to get free to the quarterback. His lack of athletic ability to limit him in the NFL as he’s likely viewed as a rotational player.

 

6th/211 Conor McDermott, OT

Ht.: 6-8 Wt.: 307 School: UCLA

Big with long arms and adequate feet McDermott was able to hold down the left side as three-year starter. New England loves to take big long tackles who have upside and use them as extra tight ends. McDermott will get a chance to develop and fill a role with the hopes that he can be a replacement for Marcus Cannon or Cameron Fleming when their contracts expire.

 

Best Pick

Rivers (third round)

 

Upside Pick

Garcia (third round)

 

Overall Thoughts

New England was limited to only four picks in the draft as they traded away the rest this offseason picking up Brandin Cooks and Kony Ealy. Having a low number of picks didn’t stop the Patriots from hitting big as both Garcia and Rivers project as top end starters.

Grade: B

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