This week the NFL Combine is taking place in Indianapolis. This is a chance for the incoming rookies to show off their skill to scouts from all 32 teams. Yes there are also pro days. However, the NFL Combine is the big event for all rookies to compete with each other. It’s clear what New England has on their mind this week. The Patriots want a rookie wide receiver. The question is, which one? There’s plenty to pick from as New England has the 21st overall selection in next month’s NFL Draft.
New England’s draft woes with wide receivers
Patriots fans should be excited that the team is showing high interest in many of the top receivers in this year’s draft class. But, there could be some who also are hesitant. The Patriots aren’t exactly the greatest at picking wide receivers. Most notably the last receiver selected in the first round by New England is N’Keal Harry. Harry hasn’t panned out in New England and even requested a trade last offseason. In short, the receivers who succeed in New England are the ones who are brought in most of the time from free agency or a trade. The only receiver in recent history that was drafted by New England that showed promise was Malcolm Mitchell. Mitchell couldn’t shake the injury bug after his rookie season and was waived and eventually retired.
Braxton Berrios is another name that fans were excited for. But, just like most rookie receivers, his career didn’t last long in New England. The Patriots also tend to pick the wrong receiver as well in the draft as players like D.K. Metcalf and A.J. Brown were passed on by New England.
This year’s notable rookie wide receivers
This year’s rookie wide receiver class has a lot of potential. Maybe not as much compared to last year’s, but, there is still some serious talent coming into the NFL. Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave, Alabama’s Jameson Williams, and John Metchie, and Arkansas’ Treylon Burks are just some of this year’s talent coming into the league. Williams and Metchie will not workout at the combine as they’re both recovering from knee injuries. But, both the Crimson Tide receivers have been impressive in interviews with teams. With the exception of Bolden and possibly Metchie, these receivers are expected to be selected in the first round.
Who has met with the Patriots?
The Patriots are making the presence known with these rookie wide receivers. So far, New England has met with Jameson Williams, John Metchie and Slade Bolden from Alabama, Wan’Dale Robinson from Kentucky, Romeo Doubs from Nevada, Chris Olave from Ohio State, and Treylon Burks from Arkansas. It’s clear to many that the Patriots are going to address their need at having a number one receiver and it looks like the draft might be the answer to how New England plans on finding their number one receiver for Mac Jones.
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-Matt Burnett (@mattthew_jordan on Twitter)