A once-a-day look at a draft prospect that either has been targeted for the Patriots in a mock draft, has had a private workout for New England or has made an official visit to Gillette Stadium. In the end, mocks are good for discussion and workouts and interviews could be a smokescreen or a sign of real interest, but these are players who make sense as being on the Pats’ radar for the upcoming draft.
Name: QB Ricky Stanzi, Iowa
Height, weight: 6-4, 223 pounds
Hometown: Mentor, Ohio (Lake Catholic HS)
Senior season stats: 13 games (13 starts); 221 for 345 (64.1 percent), 3,004 yards, 25 touchdowns, 6 interceptions, passer efficiency rating 157.63 [single-season school record]
Career stats: 39 games (35 starts); 542 for 907 (59.8 percent), 7,377 yards, 56 TD, 31 INT
Honors: Big Ten Sportsmanship award; finalist for Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award
Combine: 40 dash – 4.93s; vertical – 32.5 in.; broad jump – 9-2; 3-cone – 6.95s
Why he’s a fit for the Pats: The question has come up in recent years: when does New England start looking for Tom Brady’s successor? There’s no way of knowing if Stanzi could be that player, but talent evaluators believe that he has many of the raw materials needed (size, smarts, footwork, leadership) and if given time, he’ll blossom into a quality NFL starter. He could be worth a second-day pick to start the process of developing him.