2nd Round (36)
Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame
The Patriots are in desperate need for a safety to play next to Patrick Chung. While I think Smith might be closer to a late 2nd/3rd round talent, when the Patriots really like a player they’ll be willing to reach.
Smith is a player who can play both safety spots and he was the lone captain at Notre Dame this year. Smith can come up to the line of scrimmage and be solid in run support, and can also play centerfield, which is something the Patriots have dearly missed lately.
Last year, Devin McCourty really struggled at cornerback, but that was in part due to very poor help all season from his safeties. Smith is the kind of player who should be able to use his instincts to break on a ball and help McCourty out over the top where he struggled most.
2nd Round (48)
Kendall Reyes, DE, Connecticut
Brandon Deaderick and Kyle Love have been fine for the Patriots, but New England could certainly afford to add more talent at the 5-tech position.
Reyes showed off very impressive athleticism at the combine, moving incredibly well for his 299 pound frame. He played a lot of 1-tech at college, but is certainly athletic enough to play 5-tech at the pro level.
His athleticism, plus his ability to read plays and rely on his instincts could make him a special player in the NFL. Reyes could still use some help improving his pass rush skills, especially with his hands, but with pro coaching, that could come in time. Adding Reyes could really boost the Patriots rotation along the front seven. Reyes was also a captain at UConn.
2nd Round (63)
Marvin Jones, WR, Cal
If the Super Bowl showed one thing, it was that the Patriots need outside receiver help. Deion Branch lost a step last year, and it was clear that Ochocinco, Edelman, Slater or Underwood were not the answer.
Even if the Patriots add a free agent like Brandon Lloyd, they could still use help at the position. Jones is a player comparable to Lloyd. He has the speed to go deep, skills to go up and find the ball, and he’s a plus route runner with strong hands.
Jones was a captain at Cal, a three year starter, he has experience in a pro style offense and he has experience reading the opposing defense on option routes. If he and Brady can get on the same page, it could be dangerous.
Click on page 3 for rounds three through seven.