In my opinion, this is where I see the Patriots’ depth chart in the aftermath of the draft. I have not included any of the 15 undrafted free agents the Patriots can sign. Patriots currently have 75 players on the roster, including the seven draft picks.
Players in red are free agents or trades. Draft picks are highlighted in yellow.
Much of my reasoning is the subject of tomorrow’s column. We’ll follow with a few superlatives for kicks.
Here are a few bonus superlatives:
Most likely to make an instant impact: Aaron Dobson, WR (second round)
The more I watched of him, the more I liked him, if not loved him. He’s everything you want in an X vertical receiver. If he’s as smart as the Patriots think he is, then he should have no trouble grabbing the starting spot where the Patriots have few other options and desperately need an impact player to make this offense a nightmare to defend.
Biggest bust potential: Jamie Collins, LB/DE (second round)
Sorry, I just don’t see it on film. He’s an OK player but I see way too much of Jermaine Cunningham in him. Can dazzle with athletic ability, but how good of a football player is he? Has two pass-rush moves: speed and power. That’s it. No spin moves. No rips. Just straight ahead. Has some of the stiffest hips I’ve seen. Now, the x-factor is how the Patriots view him. If they think he’s a standup linebacker, that makes a little more sense. But that would have to come from private workouts because he’s played the same hybrid role the Patriots use for their ends.
Biggest upside: Michael Buchanan, DE/LB (seventh round)
The guy has a freak frame and athletic ability. If he can grow into his body and mature a little bit, the Patriots could have something big here. A lot of ifs, but definitely a huge upside to a player out of a good conference.
Longest career: Logan Ryan, CB (third round)
Just a rock, solid good football player. Not reliant on his speed so he’ll still be able to play when that starts to go because he just knows how to play. Also has safety versatility to that may help extend his career.