Patriots 2023 NFL Draft: Reactions to Boston media mock drafts

ATHENS, GA - NOVEMBER 06: Broderick Jones #59 of the Georgia Bulldogs leaves the field at the conclusion of the game against the Missouri Tigers at Sanford Stadium on November 6, 2021 in Athens, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
ATHENS, GA - NOVEMBER 06: Broderick Jones #59 of the Georgia Bulldogs leaves the field at the conclusion of the game against the Missouri Tigers at Sanford Stadium on November 6, 2021 in Athens, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /

Some New England Patriots local mock drafters are off the mark when it comes to selecting the right positions never mind the right players for the Pats early in the 2023 NFL Draft.

High-profile observers have totally missed the boat when they select a wide receiver, cornerback, or positions other than OT in the NFL draft with one of the top two Patriots draft selections.

This space would make an exception when it comes to the dynamic Iowa defensive lineman, Lukas Van Ness who is an impactful defensive lineman with off-the-charts potential and versatility. Should the Patriots select him in the first round, there is no issue here.

Absent that, unless all the top offensive tackles like Broderick Jones of Georgia are all off the board, there is no other option than to take one with the team’s first selection.

New England Patriots need to protect the quarterback

Local New England Patriots mock drafters may just be having fun with their multiple mock drafts. That’s quite possible but it’s time to get real.

Mainly, selecting a wide receiver, especially a slot receiver like Zay Flowers is illogical, not that Flowers isn’t a nice player. He is. But a wide receiver is not the highest priority for the New England Patriots.

WEEI radio is one outlet that clearly “gets it”.  So does’s Phil Perry who had this to say,

"The three most glaring roster weaknesses for the Patriots to address in Round 1 are offensive tackle, wide receiver and cornerback."

Perry has the top priority spot on. The team absolutely needs to reinforce the wide receiver and cornerback positions. A defensive tackle would be the second priority here but that’s splitting hairs.

As Perry understands, absent myopia, no Patriot fan or observer should obfuscate the reality that if they cannot protect their two relatively immobile quarterbacks, Mac Jones (if he’s still here) and Bailey Zappe, the team will be sunk again offensively in 2023.

Some QBs absolutely require a clean picket to perform. Anomalies like Tom Brady have a sixth-sense-like ability with a quick step to avoid the rush. It’s innate.

Either you have it or you don’t. The Patriots QBs at the moment (there is always hope they draft a dual-threat one), don’t. Therefore, you do whatever it takes to provide that clean pocket.

New England Patriots have to do the right thing in the draft

The team should fill holes on the O-line with at least two picks and they may even be able to trade down to acquire additional picks to fill in the other holes later.

Whatever it takes, one of the first two picks has to be an offensive tackle, preferably a left tackle, but a top right tackle is fine, if say Van Ness is available earlier. If he or one of the left tackles is not available, then trade down and accumulate additional picks.

With Van Ness in hand, they can then move up to select an OT or if not, take him with their highest remaining pick. Then go wild for WRs, CBs, a TE, LB, and everything else. They’ll have plenty of picks.

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For some inexplicable reason last year, the team eschewed drafting an offensive tackle until the seventh round. That was personnel mismanagement.

Hopefully, they won’t repeat that same mistake this season but with the Patriots and their ofttimes confounding draft “strategy”, don’t be shocked. They go their own way and it shows in their record without Brady.

For two decades Brady bailed them out of the draft and other personnel foibles. That doesn’t work when there’s no great safety valve there to fix all the mistakes.

This year the team needs a consensus draft, not picks out of left field, not reaches, and to address first things first. The first thing is a consensus top offensive tackle in one of their first two picks and not someone no one has heard of.

Patriots have an ace-in-the-hole approach to draft. dark. Next

Can, they do it? Of course, it’s not rocket science. Will they? That’s a horse of a different color. If history is any indication, they won’t. But that’s why they conduct the draft.

Nevertheless, don’t expect a lot and you won’t get disappointed, as New England Patriots draft followers have been for most of the Bill Belichick years.

After all, as even owner Robert Kraft has pointed out, they haven’t really drafted very well for years.