New England Patriots

New England Patriots

Player News - Patriots

Date: Team: Pos:

Patriots fifth-round LS Joe Cardona may not get clearance from the Navy to play in the NFL right away.

"The decision is out of my hands," said Cardona, who doesn’t have an exact timeframe for when he'll find out. "Right now I’m prepared to be the best football player I can be for the New England Patriots and the best naval officer I can be." Even if Cardona does get the OK to play in the NFL, he can be called back to duty anytime if needed. Only Bill Belichick can get away with using a fifth-round pick on a long snapper who may not even be available to the team.
May 4 - 8:02 AM

Patriots coach Bill Belichick called No. 131 overall pick Shaq Mason "probably the best run blocker in the entire draft."

It's obviously high praise for a middle-round pick, but Mason demonstrated true mauling ability at Georgia Tech. He also showed plus athleticism at the Yellow Jackets' Pro Day. Capable of playing both guard and center, Mason has long-range starting upside and could even push for snaps in year one.
May 3 - 7:29 PM

ESPN Boston reports the Patriots' second-round selection of Stanford S Jordan Richards "raised some eyebrows in some NFL scouting circles."

Per reporter Mike Reiss, some clubs viewed Richards as a "late-round consideration." We weren't a fan of the pick. Richards is not a plus athlete. Bill Belichick has a checkered history with second-round defensive backs. Both 2011's Ras-I Dowling and 2012's Tavon Wilson were viewed as reaches. Dowling is nearly out of the league, while Wilson played only 188 snaps on defense last season.
Source: ESPN Boston
May 3 - 3:40 PM

ESPN Boston believes Aaron Dobson could be "one of the biggest winners" from the Patriots' draft weekend.

The Patriots drafted 11 players, zero of whom play receiver. When Dobson wasn't injured last season, he was in the doghouse. New England's No. 4 receiver job is there for the taking for Dobson, but he'll need a strong camp and preseason.
Source: ESPN Boston
May 3 - 3:34 PM

Patriots signed Michigan QB/WR Devin Gardner.

He'll try to make the Pats as a wideout. Gardner (6'4/218) backed up Denard Robinson and dabbled at receiver early in his college career, before taking over at quarterback for his final two seasons. An ineffective passer, Gardner worked out at wideout for NFL teams this spring after managing an 18-286-4 receiving line for the Wolverines. Gardner did not exhibit NFL-receiver athleticism at the Michigan Pro Day, running 4.65 with a 35 1/2-inch vertical and 9-foot-9 broad jump. He would do well to mimic Brad Smith's career.
May 2 - 7:57 PM

Patriots selected Alabama OLB Xzavier Dickson with the No. 253 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Dickson (6'4/260) was shuttled in and out of the starting lineup as a sophomore and junior before solidifying a first-team role as a senior, and leading Alabama in tackles for loss (12.5) and sacks (9). Exposed as a sub-average athlete at the Combine, Dickson clocked 4.74 with a 29 1/2-inch vertical and nose tackle-esque 8-foot-4 broad jump. Dickson lacks NFL-caliber pass-rush explosion, and may not last long in the pros unless he improves his run defense. He'll likely have to become a Courtney Upshaw-type, two-down edge setter to stick.
May 2 - 6:29 PM

Patriots selected Marshall CB Darryl Roberts with the No. 247 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Roberts is the second best athlete among defensive backs in this class. He ran a 4.36 forty with outstanding jumps and even posted 28 bench press reps. He could be viewed as a developmental talent, but we like Roberts' tape and skills. He made 42 career starts.
May 2 - 6:19 PM

Patriots selected Arkansas TE AJ Derby with the No. 202 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Derby (6'4/255) was a two-year Razorback after transferring from community college, spending the first as a backup quarterback and the second at tight end. He caught 22 balls for 303 yards and three TDs as a senior. Originally a four-star recruit to Iowa, Derby plays with physicality and toughness, and offers plus athleticism with 4.72 speed and a 6.99 three-cone time. Turning 24 before his rookie year, Derby is an overaged project, but we wouldn't rule out the possibility of him becoming an NFL contributor. He is a natural pass catcher with starting-caliber physical tools.
May 2 - 4:32 PM

Patriots selected Mississippi State S/LB Matthew Wells with the No. 178 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Wells (6'2/222) made 33 starts for the Bulldogs, piling up 22 career TFLs, six sacks, and three forced fumbles. A sideline-to-sideline speedster, Wells confirmed his range with a 4.43 forty at the Mississippi State Pro Day, in addition to a 35 1/2-inch vertical and 9-foot-10 broad jump. Built like a safety, Wells could contribute in the NFL as a dime linebacker and special teamer.
May 2 - 3:36 PM

Patriots selected Navy LS Joe Cardona with the No. 166 overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft.

Cardona (6'2/242) was the clear-cut best long snapper in the draft and is the first player at the position selected in six years. There were pre-draft whispers that he wouldn't be available to the NFL full-time for a couple years thanks to service commitments, but the Patriots clearly don't think that will be an obstacle. "Really like the size, the velocity," one coach told the Journal-Sentinel. "He's athletic enough to protect. He runs pretty well for a big kid. He's strong. He's tough."
May 2 - 3:06 PM

Patriots selected Georgia Tech G/C Shaq Mason with the No. 131 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Mason (6'2/304) made 40 starts for the Yellow Jackets, seeing action at both guard positions and earning third-team All-American honors as a senior. A shocking Combine snub, Mason proceeded to crush his Pro Day, running 4.99 with a 32-inch vertical and 9-foot-2 broad jump. Mason is a powerful drive blocker whose size limitations may force him to center in the pros. Either way, he projects as a run-game asset early in his career.
May 2 - 1:32 PM

Patriots selected Florida State G Tre' Jackson with the No. 111 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Jackson (6'4/330) made 42 starts for the Seminoles, earning unanimous first-team All-American honors as a senior. He showed a concerning lack of athleticism at the Combine, running 5.52 with a 25-inch vertical and 8-foot broad jump. Jackson's struggles in pass protection can be tied to deficient movement skills, but he has a lot to offer as a power-run blocker. NFL.com's Lance Zierlein has likened Jackson to longtime Falcons LG Justin Blalock.
May 2 - 12:39 PM

Patriots selected Arkansas DE Trey Flowers with the No. 101 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Flowers (6'2/266) was a 39-game starter for the Razorbacks, compiling 47.5 career tackles for loss, 18 sacks, and four forced fumbles as a two-time All-SEC second-team selection by the conference's coaches. Although Flowers ran a plodding 4.93 at the Combine, he impressed in the vertical (36 1/2") and broad (10'1") jumps. Flowers has some stiffness athletically, but is a long-armed (34 1/2") power player executes with an incredible amount of force. Flowers' best NFL fit is as a strong-side end who stops the run first, and rushes the passer second.
May 2 - 12:12 PM

Patriots selected Oklahoma DE Geneo Grissom with the No. 97 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Grissom (6'3/262) saw action at defensive end and tight end early in his career before converting to outside linebacker as a senior. He recorded 17 tackles for loss, eight sacks, and two forced fumbles in four years at OU. Grissom displayed average athleticism in Indy, running 4.81 with a 9-foot-9 broad jump and 37-inch vertical. Neither big-time pass rusher nor natural linebacker, Grissom's NFL position is a question mark. He would do well to mirror Saints edge setter Parys Haralson's career.
May 1 - 11:15 PM

Patriots selected Stanford S Jordan Richards with the No. 64 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft.

Richards (5'11/211) was a three-year starter for the Cardinal, tallying nine career INTs and earning first-team All-Pac 12 as a senior. Exposed as a mediocre athlete at the Combine, Richards ran 4.65 with a 32-inch vertical and 9-foot-3 broad jump. Richards was a ballhawk at Stanford, but projects as a coverage-deficient, run-stopping safety for the Pats. He'll have to contribute on special teams as a rookie.
May 1 - 9:28 PM


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