New England Patriots: 3 thoughts as joint practices with Giants wrap up

Mac Jones #10 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Mac Jones #10 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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New England Patriots
New England Patriots cornerback Shaun Wade (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

The New England Patriots welcomed in the New York Giants for two days of joint practices this week, and it was certainly a busy period for both teams involved. With these practices now in the book, we move another step closer to the conclusion of the offseason and the beginning of the regular season.

For Patriots fans, these were the last two practices that were open to the public. Despite the raging heat in Foxboro, that didn’t stop fans from making the trek out to watch the two squads face off.

With the action all behind us, it feels like a good time to unpack all the action from the past two days, both on and off the field. There were some major strides made on the field, and some major moves made off the field as well.

As the final roster cutdown draws near, the action on and off the field will have massive impact on who ends up on the final 53 man roster. Let’s take a look at some of the Pats action from the past few days, starting with a move that was made just a couple hours ago.

New England Patriots thought No. 3: Cornerback depth added

It’s been an interesting preseason for the Pats secondary. With the Stephon Gilmore contract dispute hanging over the groups head, they have struggled to find consistency at times throughout training camp and preseason. J.C. Jackson and Jonathan Jones are locked into corner spots, with Jalen Mills also seeming like a safe bet to join them.

But the depth of the position has come into question lately, as a bevy of younger players haven’t really managed to step up and make an impact. Combine that with the uncertainty of Gilmore’s situation, and it’s easy to see why New England was a bit concerned with their cornerback group. To combat the issue, the Pats swung a trade with the Baltimore Ravens for cornerback Shaun Wade, who the Ravens just recently selected in the NFL’s most recent draft.

Wade offers New England a high upside prospect this group doesn’t really offer, while also filling in as a depth piece as well. Wade was considered to be a first round prospect as recently as 2020, but struggled his senior season at Ohio State, and he ended up falling to Baltimore all the way in the fifth round.

Wade has the potential to develop into a top cornerback in this league, but it’s going to take some time. He will probably have a pretty small role with the team at first, but with Gilmore still set to miss time and Jones recently dealing with a couple of injuries, Wade may be thrown into action sooner than expected.

The Patriots sent a 2022 fifth round pick and a 2023 seventh round pick back in return, which certainly isn’t anything to scoff at. They were able to address a position of need with a low-risk high-reward player, and it could end up looking like a steal later on down the line. While New England added to a position of need this afternoon, they made another big deal yesterday morning to deal from a position of strength.