Post Draft Scouting Report: The UDFA’s

The Patriots brought in some intriguing UDFA’s, but do any of them have a real shot at making the team?

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

It is time to put a bow on the 2017 NFL draft and what better way to do so than to talk a little bit about some of the undrafted players the Patriots brought in after the draft was over. With the Patriots only having 4 actual draft picks, they could afford to bring in a bigger class of undrafted guys. They also could afford to pay a few of them a higher bonus than you normally see an undrafted player get. While this does not really change these players chances of making the team, it does show that the Patriots wanted to make sure they got these guys into their camps. I for one, am excited about this group and think a few of these guys have a legitimate chance to make the roster, while a handful of others will make the practice squad or make another teams 53. Here are the guys from the long list of UDFA’s that I am excited to watch this fall.

Name: Harvey Langi, LB

School: BYU

If you didn’t come to this site by accident than I am sure you have read all about Langi by now, but since you are here, why not one more report on the guy, right? Here is what I wrote about him prior to the draft:

Harvey Langi, BYU (6’2″, 251 Lbs): Langi is more athlete than football player right now, but he has decent size for the position and excellent athletic traits. Much like Boulware, he plays the game the right way. He gives maximum effort on every down and just loves the game. He has seen playing time at Defensive End, Middle Linebacker, Outside Linebacker, and Running Back. Langi is a work in progress, but showed great improvement as the season went on and his best football is ahead of him. He has all the athletic traits as well as the mindset needed to play well above his draft slot. He will need coaching in just about every facet of the game, but has shown a quick learning curve in the past and should continue to develop quickly. Grade: 7th round

By now, we have all heard the story about Belichick saying he would have taken Langi in the first round of the 2016 NFL draft had he come out. I have my doubts about the validity of that story, but who knows. What I do know is that they gave Langi the highest possible guaranteed salary they are allowed to give a player, which means there is some definite interest there. To get a true feel for what type of role Langi could potentially have on the Patriots, you need to go back to the 2015 tape. This past season, they had Langi playing mostly as an Edge defender and that is not his natural position. This position change stunted his growth and was a major factor in him going undrafted. He has active and can fight through trash to get after the ball. His recognition skills are underdeveloped because he has not been at one position long enough to focus on those specific skills. I like his mindset and I think he will be a fan favorite this fall. He has not played his best football yet and I think the team is intrigued by his potential. He has the physical, athletic, and off field traits the team looks for and if he can show progress throughout camp, he will make this team.


Name: Jacob Hollister

School: Wyoming (#88)

Position: Tight End

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 239 Lbs

Going into the draft, I thought Tight End could be one of those positions that the Patriots invest a draft pick in despite not having a huge need there. In a sense, they did draft a player when the traded a 5th round pick for one of my former binkies, James O’Shaughnessy. Hollister reminds me of O’Shaughnessy when he came out of college, so it is interesting that they brought him in as well. While I think JO’S has the inside track to win a spot between the two, Hollister has intriguing offensive potential. He is an H-back type that brings very little blocking to the position. He is however, an excellent athlete with good size and natural hands. His tape showed some strength issues, so that will have to be addressed if he is going to make this team and have a role. He is a good route runner with speed to get down field. He is a willing blocker, but his lack of strength makes him more of a get in the way type rather than a true in line blocker. It seems the #3 Tight End position is a position the Patriots are looking to upgrade and the competition should be a fun one to watch in camp.


Name: Austin Carr

School: Northwestern

Position: Wide Receiver

Height: 6’0″

Weight: 202 Lbs.

Carr actually got a draftable grade from me and was a target for me in my big board series. Here is what I wrote about him pre-draft:

Austin Carr, Northwestern (6’0″, 202 Lbs.): Carr has the look of a Patriots Wide Receiver. He does not have elite measureables, but he does the small things to get open. He shows no fear going over the middle and will take a hit. He is a savvy route runner who does the little things to shake his defender. He has good footwork and varies his speeds in his routes to keep defenders confused. He is a smart player and a hard worker. Carr is a limited athlete and is not a downfield thread, but like the long lineage of WR’s before him, his skill set allows him to make plays and be a consistent target for his QB. He is a catch machine that is not much of a threat after the catch. Grade: 7th Round

The Wide Receiver room is awfully crowded going into the season, so Carr is going to have a tough time making the team this year. However, the Patriots have a couple of Receivers who are getting up there in age and are on their final year of their deals, so a spot could be opening up for a guy like Carr and his skill set. I think he is a perfect candidate for the practice squad. There, he can learn from guys like Edelman and Amendola and possibly be one of their replacements next year. I would say he is closer to Amendola from a size and skill set standpoint, so look for him to play that type of role this preseason and potentially next year and beyond.


Name: David Jones

School: University of Richmond

Position: Safety

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 205 Lbs.

Jones was on my radar coming into this season after a very productive Junior year. Unfortunately, his Senior season was cut short after he fractured his arm for the second year in a row. When he was on the field though, he was electric. He tracks the ball extremely well and has a knack for making plays. He tested extremely well at his pro day and has physical and athletic traits that should have gotten him drafted. He is physical player with above average tackling skills. He is a long strider who can make up ground quickly. He started out in college as a Corner but moved to Safety as a Junior where he thrived. He is a versatile player who has the skill set to play both Safety positions. He is known for his work ethic and his intelligence. Jones has added bulk to his frame, but he still needs to get bigger and stronger, but he does have the frame to do so. He also needs time to develop better instincts and the injury history is a concern, but I think he could make a run at taking former 2nd round disappointment Jordan Richards job.


Name: Dwayne Thomas

School: LSU

Position: Cornerback

Height: 5’11”

Weight: 196 Lbs.

It can be a blessing or a curse playing on a defense that is filled with NFL talent. For Thomas, it most certainly was the latter. When you are playing with guys who are far more physically and athletically gifted, you can get lost in the shuffle, and this is just what happened to Thomas despite being productive in his own right. Thomas showed a lot of versatility at LSU. He played boundary Corner, slot Corner, and even a little Linebacker. He is a smart player with good instincts. He showed the ability to be an above average blitzer from the slot position. He is tough on Receivers at the line of scrimmage and is a good tackler. He is very good in run support, showing a willingness to get his hands dirty and come up and make a hit. He lacks ideal size and does not have the speed necessary to stick with receivers downfield, but he has all the makings of a good slot corner. He fits the mold the Patriots look for. He is a very good tackler  and does not allow many yards after the catch.


Name: Justin Thompson

School: Utah

Position: Safety/Linebacker

Height: 6’2″

Weight: 208 Lbs.

I will be honest, I didn’t know much about Thompson before the draft. I had read that he had a very good regional combine, but that was about it. He has good combination of size and speed. He is a very good special teams player and that is where he would have to make his mark. He describes himself as a hybrid type player (compared himself to Sua Cravens). He is a long shot to even make the practice squad, but he has intriguing size and athleticism and plays a position that needs some youth, so maybe he could be a long term project and develop into something over time.


Name: Josh Augusta

School: Missouri

Position: Defensive Tackle

Height: 6’4″

Weight: 365 Lbs:

Augusta is a huge man that has better footwork than you would expect from a guy his size. He plays with power and showed he could easily push single blockers and more than handle double teams. He was athletic enough to play Wide Receiver in high school despite weighing over 300 Lbs. He lacks lateral agility and his weight is sloppy. He needs to shed some pounds and turn some of that mass into muscle to increase his mobility and durability. He plays with a good motor, but is more of a hole plugger than anything. If he can get some of his weight issues under control, he has some promise, but his best shot right now is to make the practice squad, rework his body and try and make an impact beyond year one.


Name: Adam Butler

School: Vanderbilt

Position: Defensive Line

Height: 6’5:

Weight: 293 Lbs.

I am intrigued by Butler. He is a former Offensive Lineman who has played multiple positions in multiple fronts along the defensive line while at Vanderbilt. He is very stout against the run and despite not have great speed, he was the Commodores leading sack artist this past season. He is a smart player who knows and plays with good leverage. He has long arms and he uses them to his advantage. He created a lot of disruption along a line that didn’t have much talent. He also garnered a lot of attention from offensive lineman, creating the necessary space for his teammate Cunningham to make a lot of his plays. He is a bit of a tweener right now as he does not have the strength to play on the interior on a regular basis and he is not athletic enough to play Defensive End. He looks tailor made for a 5 tech in a 3-4 and that maybe something the Patriots look to play more this season. Butler plays with a non stop motor and his determination on the field made him a difficult player to control in college. It will be interesting to see what the Patriots plan for Butler is.


The Others:

LeShun Daniels, RB: Powerful north south runner. Lacks make you miss agility and takes what is given, but doesn’t get much more. Bigger back who could do some damage in short yardage and goal line.

Max Rich, OT: prototypical Patriots Tackle size with good feet. Strength is an issue and it will be a big jump in competition. The Oline room got crowded with the two players the team drafted, but Rich could make the practice squad and get the necessary time needed to get his strength up and adjust to the speed of the NFL

DJ Killings, CB: Smart player with good toughness for the position. He is not afraid to come up and make a tackle. Average physical and athletic traits. Struggles to locate the ball when its in the air.

Cole Croston, OT/OG: fundamentally sound player with good size for the position. Heavy footed and struggles with speed. Lacks upper body strength and will get pushed back. Smart player who uses his hands well and just gets the job done. He is better suited to move inside where he doesn’t have to move as much. He needs to add strength, but he does not make mistakes from a mental standpoint and his fundamentals are there.

Corey Vereen, DE/OLB: Vereen has a ton of experience as a pass rusher. He does not have great athletic traits, but he has a good motor. He is well built and handles the run well. Lacks the explosion needed to be a pass rusher and is a bit heavy footed. He has active hands and plays with good leverage, but I didn’t see many traits that will keep him around.


Final Thoughts:

There are a few other UDFA’s that I just did not get around to watching, but if I find something worth writing about, I will. I really enjoyed this year’s draft process and the class that the Patriots brought in. I think Langi and Hollister have the best chance of these UDFA’s to make the team, but there are a handful of others that I think should make the practice squad this year and could make the 53 man roster next year.

Do not forget to come by the site throughout the Summer as I will be taking a small break, but then gearing up for the 2018 class. I am working on an analytics project that I hope to have figured out by the start of the next draft season. I will also be posting some fun stuff this offseason. I will put up some scouting reports of previous Patriots draft picks that I did prior to writing on here and maybe making it a contest or something.

I want to thank each and every one of you who have come to the site to read one mans opinions on the NFL Draft. I especially want to thank the individuals who took the time to post on here. I have learned so much from each of you and have truly enjoyed interacting with each of you.

Thanks again and












70 Responses to “Post Draft Scouting Report: The UDFA’s”

  1. Daniel Sullivan says:

    My Favorite picks for each round of draft.
    1 Trubisky QB Bears
    2 Kizer QB Browns
    3 Garcia Patriots
    4 Perine RB Redskins
    5 Brown ILB Jacksonville
    6 McDermott OT Patriots
    7 Rochell DL Chargers

    Patriots favorite free agents Vereen DE/ Daniels RB

    Sorry to get away from football.
    Celtics Draft
    1 Fultz G Washington
    2 Jackson SG Duke
    2 Wilson PF Michigan
    2 Swanigan PF Purdue

    Thanks for a Great season Celtics what great progress!

  2. macspak says:

    and what are this year’s question marks?

    When will TB’s age show – this year
    Is JG really that good
    Are the RB’s as good and as deep as they seem and how will playing time get allocated
    Will Gilmore play up to his contract
    How will Butler react to the lack of his
    Who will step up at DT and will Branch decline
    Where is our interior OL depth
    What’s up with Solder
    Who is going to step up at OLB
    Where will the pass rush come from
    Will the team and OL be as injury free this year
    Will Gostkowski regain his top form

    • steve earle says:

      All interesting questions Mac wish I could answer but my crystal ball doesn’t work any better then yours. Biggest question is the Brady question of course. Who can say what or rather when that will be answered. Not really sure I want to know even. One that confuses me is the one on Solder. Didn’t know anything was up there, did I miss something?

  3. macspak says:

    The Gronk extension today got me to thinking. What sets the Patriots apart? What makes them so good? How do they sustain their excellence?

    It starts with Kraft and BB – ownership and management who create the culture, which includes the philosophy and practices that promote team, winning and excellence. Today’s most evident strengths are:

    BB and the coaching staff
    Select elite talent
    Team approach and attitude
    Depth at key positions
    Overall depth
    Promising youth

  4. Ryan says:

    Jason McCourty signs a 2-year, $6 million contract with the Browns. When asked about the Patriots, he said he reached out but they didn’t need his services.

    Really, for $3 million a year he wasn’t worth it? C’mon, Belicheck, I think you might want to reevaluate that one.

    • steve earle says:

      Yea McCourty could have been signed Ryan but how many CB’s do we need? I’m no expert but it looks to me as though we are pretty darn deep at the position already. That could change with a rash of injuries sure but do we know it will? It would have been okay if BB signed him but it’s also okay the Bill didn’t in my mind.

      • Ryan says:

        This all depends on whether Eric Rowe becomes a reliable 2nd cornerback (I guess Cyrus Jones also deserves another shot.) if Rowe isn’t able to elevate his play to a starting level and we lose Butler to free agency, it’s going to be Stephen Gilmore followed by a bunch of average corners next year.

        I doubt McCourty’s at full strength, but I’m sure he’d have inherent chemistry with Devin and I’d trust him as our second cornerback. At the very least, he could’ve pushed Rowe in camp to reach his potential. As veteran insurance for Butler leaving and Rowe failing to improve, we could’ve done a lot worse than Jason McCourty at $3 million a year.

    • macspak says:

      In addition to our depth you also have to ask, is this the Jason M of 3 to 4 years ago, or, is today’s Jason M in the midst of an irreversible decline? I think we often “get stuck” on a player thinking he is who he was rather than who he now is. use Wilfork as an example, who is not sure he wants to retire. You hear his name and think what? The dominate or semi dominant ultra athletic player for one so large/ Or, do you think an older, overweight player who might be able to sporadically help out on early downs?

      • steve earle says:

        Very true mac and I honestly haven’t followed Jason M’s history so didn’t want to address that possible issue, still don’t. Just figure Bill has the position covered.

  5. Daniel Sullivan says:

    Go Celtics just ask BB if a great team can beat a Superstar?

    My Favorite Pats Draft pick. Conor McDermott OT

    My Favorite Free Agent. Brooks Ellis LB

    My Favorite Veteran for a big year. Dwayne Allen TE

    This country needs to get behind President Trump I think he could make all our Lives a lot better.

    • steve earle says:

      Living dangerously Daniel bring up politics. I’m pretty political myself but refrain from mixing my sports with it. JMO.

      • Daniel Sullivan says:


        Trying to make the most of things in Football off season.

        Take Care

      • Macspak says:

        Not just your opinion Steve. This site is a sanctuary. We must keep it that way.

        • steve earle says:

          Yea plenty of political sites around. Me I’m a prolific letter to the editor writer but not here, this is football only to me.

  6. Stephen J says:

    With the reports coming out that the Pats are expected to hire UT-Chattanooga outside linebackers coach DeMarcus Covington who was hired by Tom Arth in January who has ties to John Carroll University that the Pats seem to draw on. It made me wonder if the Pats could be a landing spot for DE Keionta Davis who played for Tom Arth. Ian Rappaport reported that Keionta Davis went undrafted thanks to a bulging disc in his neck and that his neck will heal over time. At that point, he’ll pick a team. He worked out for NE, CAR, TEN. Timing maybe key here. How long will it take for his neck to heal? Are the Pats still interested? Could the Pats sign him and put him on Pup/IR and make it a redshirt year? All those are questions I have. Here is refresher on Keionta Davis from Mike Gerken

    Here is his Pro Day results with measurements

  7. Stephen J says:

    Thomas Sperbeck beats out Jordan Westerkamp and Riley Cooper former Eagles WR in Bucs 3 day minicamp.

  8. Stephen J says:

    Here is a chart from PFF highlighting play making cornerbacks. The Patriots have two on the list that are on the team this year but what stands out to me is they had one that was better than both of them but cut him in Cre’Von LeBlanc

    • steve earle says:

      Yea, his being cut surprised me last year. Also the LB Gruger-Hill I think the name was. Bill may not be perfect but over all pretty good.

      • Stephen J says:

        This from It’s odd to say, but the Patriots have had more success finding cornerbacks after the draft than they have in second round, where they selected Cyrus Jones. The Patriots grabbed Terrance Wheatley in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft, Darius Butler in 2009 and Ras-I Dowling in 2011.

        That’s just CB’s not to mention the Safeties. The only good second round pick that comes to mind is Sebastian Volmer.

        • JoeyNL says:

          That Gronk guy was pretty solid to. So was Jamie Collins.

        • Stephen J says:

          Hey thanks for responding JoeyNL glad to see someone else is around after the draft. I was wondering who would respond if I left those two out.

        • steve earle says:

          Good lord I wouldn’t include Dowling in that. Guy couldn’t stay off IR.

    • Stephen J says:

      Makes me wonder about quotes like, “It doesn’t matter about how you get here, it matters what you do when you get here” and “It doesn’t matter whether you were drafted or not, you’re going to get a chance to play.” Both Cre’Von Leblanc and Jonathan Jones out played the likes of Cyrus Jones and Justin Coleman during OTA’s, Mini Camp, Training Camp and Preseason. I was surprised when they cut him but in the long run it seems to have worked out for Leblanc though. He got his chance to play for another team and continued his play making into the season good for him.

      • steve earle says:

        NFL is big on cliche’s but seems as though much is dependent on where a guy is drafted. It may vary some from team to team but that is just a strong factor ie C. Jones.

  9. Stephen J says:

    Jordan Westerkamp attended the Browns rookie camp this past weekend after trying out for the Buccaneers the weekend before.

  10. Stephen J says:

    I was just scanning to see if I could find anything about this weekend rookie camps.

    Here is some tidbits that I came across.

    1st JoJo Mathis signed a contract with the Houston Texans but it was a tryout only contract. He was there this weekend. No word as of yet how he did. I did find out why he went undrafted. The screws in his foot that he had surgery on broke and doctors are unsure if it will heal properly.

    2nd Lance Zierlein tweeted a comment from Head Coach Bill O’Brian saying its not your fault that you’re not in great shape. You’ve been getting ready for the combine, the broad jump, the 40 yard dash, the long jump, the steeplechase, whatever it is your doing in the combine.

    3rd Wes Welker is at the Texans camp helping out their WR’s this year, especially with the slot group of the receivers at mini-camp. Keep an eye out for receivers Deante’ Gray, Shaquille Hill and Riley McCarron as the off-season progresses to camp. The best of the trio during that time could be setting themselves up for a possible shot with the offense. According to

    4th The reports that former Fordham TE Phazahn Odom has reportedly signed a deal with the Steelers after a tryout in rookie camp, he’ll be competing with Xavier Grimble, David Johnson and former Pitt TE Scott Orndoff.

    5th Former Houston CB Howard Wilson who was selected in the 4th round suffered a fractured kneecap in Browns rookie minicamp. Reported by Scott Petrak and Adam Schefter

    6th Speedy Knoll signed a contract with the Seahawks after the 3 day rookie tryout.

    7th Nick Underhill reports that former Pats TE Clay Harbor signed a contract after his tryout with the Saints at this weekends Rookie camp.

    8th Kicker Josh Gable remains unsigned after this weekends tryout with the Colts. He competed against Hawaii’s kicker Rigoberto Sanchez who was the Colts priority free agent signing.

    9th Taylor Vippolis North Carolina Tarheels Offensive Assistant Coach says Source at Eagles rookie camp raving about Mack Hollins after Day 1.

    10th Chidobe Awuzie misses 1st day of Cowboy’s Rookie Camp to attend Colorado’s Graduation ceremony.

    • steve earle says:

      Interesting revelation about Mathus. If Huston declines to sign him I’d expect it unlikely anyone will until possibly another surgery to remove the broken screws. My guess is that could lose him this season. What are your feelings on this Stephen?

      • Stephen J says:

        From what I read he already had the 2nd surgery to remove those screws and the doctor’s(which doctors his the combine or other ???) seem to believe that it will never heal properly. Now those are online reports so the accuracy of them is unknown. Now I know Mathis reported that the combine recheck went well. Now what does that mean? All I know is that no one even signed him to an undrafted free agent contract and only two teams offered a try out contract so it must of been real bad.

        • steve earle says:

          Wow, that’s surprising, I didn’t know that. Also surprised the surgeons say it will never heal. So use to the medical “miracles” of modern medicine.

  11. Stephen J says:

    Did BB and Company out smart themselves?

    With the report coming out today by Mike Reiss that the Pats were interested in drafting Dan Feeney with the 72nd pick before trading out to Tennessee. I ask myself did BB and company out smart themselves by trading the 64th pick to the Carolina Panthers for Kony Ealy and the 72nd pick. All will depend on what version of Kony Ealy arrives here with the Patriots and how well of a player Dan Feeney becomes. If Kony Ealy is the player that was at the Super Bowl and had 4 sacks while Dan Feeney is just a run of the mill Guard then the answer is no. If the other Kony Ealy shows up and Dan Feeney becomes a Pro Bowl Guard the answer will be Yes. At this point in time we will have to wait and see.

    • Stephen J says:

      Dan Feeney was picked by the Chargers with their 71st pick for those that were wondering.

    • Todti says:

      I don’t think it’s possible to compare the actual development of a player with a hypothetical one at a different team, especially for fans. Even though the interior OL had some problems, notably Andrews, they were good enough to win a Super Bowl. Sure, I would have liked e.g. Elflein to fall to them (he was taken one spot ahead of Feeney) but they will be fine anyway.

      • steve earle says:

        Your point is well taken Todti. Much depends on the coaching Freeney gets out in LA as compared to what he would have under Scar in Foxborough. Likewise Ealy is coming to a Franchise were much is demanded by way of personal responsibility. Clearly he has the physical ability and I expect peer pressure as well as coaching will have a strong effect. But drawing any conclusions now other then BB made the move based on priority need of DE over OG/OC need made sense.

  12. steve earle says:

    Pat’s said to release TE Williams. Who’s likely to replace him on roster?

    • macspak says:

      If you mean as a blocking TE, probably nobody except an OT. I think it all but guarantees that O’Shaugnessy makes the team and maybe Hollister.

      • macspak says:

        Develin too.

      • steve earle says:

        Thinking currently of the 90 man roster Mac because as you point out we have TE options. Just wondered who guys have in mind as a new addition.

        • macspak says:

          Steve E.,

          Sorry to scare you. I meant Develin would be an option to use as a TE blocker. Wouldn’t take much to tweak some sets and use him as a FB and other times as a TE.

        • macspak says:

          Who were those in for recent try outs?

        • macspak says:

          I’d like to see a veteran guard be brought in.

        • steve earle says:

          Oh glad to hear that, Develin is one of my favorite support players. As for a vet OG Bill may wait until teams have to cut down this summer and look for someone like a 9-10 yr vet with enough left but with a friendly price. Then too some UDFA might show up and shock everyone. Bill seems to have a 6th sense with linemen.

  13. Stephen J says:

    Well in today’s Patriots news is a story that started breaking yesterday. David Andrews signs a 3 year extension. Well before I get started let me say this I like the player but don’t love him. Here is a scouting report written in Feb by Inside the Pylon’s Brandon Thorn

    Notice at the end of the Summary Section where he says “Will get overwhelmed at POA againsts DL with very good length and power.”

    Now lets look at who he faces in the Division
    Jets Leonard Williams and here is combine profile Notice right off the bat in Strengths it says “Supremely gifted interior lineman with length, athleticism and elite power” His Arm Length is 34 5/8″
    You also could add Mohammed Wilkerson to this list as well his Arm Length is 35 1/4″ who Jolts people at the POA

    Bills Marcel Darius While he doesn’t have the length at 33 3/8″ he does have power to push the pocket and stand his ground adequately when run at.
    Jerel Worthy is very thick and powerful throughout his upper body and has thigh power that can blow back interior lineman off the snap and his arm length is 33″

    Dolphins Ndamukong Suh has a supreme blend of power and explosiveness from the defensive tackle spot. Possesses great size and strength to hold up at the point of attack in the running game or bull rush the pocket. His length is 33 1/2″

    One other thing PatsCap tweeted this out last night Since 15 starting centers are playing on their rookie deals that Andrews is now one of the lowest paid starting centers not on a rookie deal. That tells me while the Pats value David Andrews they don’t consider him a top of the line Center.

    • macspak says:

      I agree Andrews is not a top of the line center but he is more than adequate, has quality intangibles and fills a need, presumably at a reasonable cost. I suspect his strength and game will improve. As for the top of the line DT’s you mention they pretty much will dominate any center. No team can have the best and most expensive players at every position. Balance is needed.

    • td says:

      They don’t rely on linemen to win their one-on-one battles. They mostly zone block and need to just give Brady 2 seconds to throw. The big bodies inside do not move that fast, the smaller DT’s (Donald, Atkins in the past) do and present problems. The zone scheme they use plus the quick passing scheme allows them to get by with less than highly paid elite interior linemen. Compare this to Arizona’s need for near elite pass blockers to allow the QB time to throw downfield 20+yards. It’s about economics on the OLine.

  14. Stephen J says:

    Mike Reiss just tweeted that Kicker Josh Gable, who tried out at Patriots rookie camp last weekend, has been invited as tryout player at Colts’ rookie camp this weekend.

    • Stephen J says:

      This from Dave Griek KHGI/KFXL Sports Director. I’m not the first to have it, but I have confirmed Josh Gable is at the Colts rookie camp. Patriots have yet to make any public decision.

      • steve earle says:

        Understandable as Gable is a very interesting prospect it’s not as though the position is a need at this point in time. So unless Gost starts missing a lot of practice kicks in camp can’t be a worry.

        • macspak says:

          Agree Steve E. Not that he did not have me concerned last year, he did, but I don’t think the end is yet at hand for him. Now if his troubles worsen then a move must be made but probably with a more proven commodity.

  15. Stephen J says:

    Damarius Travis may not be an athlete but he is a football player.

    When I first looked at Travis my first impression was Meh. I dug deeper today and asked what do the Pats see in him. His highlight reel was pretty good just short. When it’s short there isn’t a whole lot to go by. His game film is where I was Meh on him. When I looked at his measurements that is when it dawned on me. I was projecting him to be a Free Safety and not a Strong Safety. When I started to view him as that somethings started to come together. His tackling is great when he takes the right angles or when he is square with the ball carrier. His issue I noticed is that since he isn’t real athletic he can take bad angles when he is beat or out of place. Now when you look at his career he has improved. Now where he caught the eye of the Pats I believe is in the Senior Bowl.
    This from (Pensacola News Journal)
    He was a midweek addition and made the most out of it. He had 6 tackles which was tied for 2nd most on the South squad but even more important than that was he spent much of the first half shadowing 6-foot-5, 270-pound tight end Michael Roberts of Toledo. Roberts had one catch in the game and it came when he wasn’t covered by Travis.

    Now Michael Roberts isn’t the fastest of guys with his 4.86 40 time, still Damarius was able to shut him down given the size difference. While Damarius Travis may struggle with the faster elusive/shifty athletes he could hold up well against the TE’s. It is something to monitor during OTA’s and Training Camp coming up where I think he will be battling for a Practice Squad spot.
    Here is his career stats at Minnesota 185 Tackles 4 Int’s 13 Pass Breakups.

    • Stephen J says:

      Something else I came across on Travis is he has had hamstring issues. He didn’t seem to have an issue with it in his Senior year but struggle with it his previous years.

    • steve earle says:

      This sounds like the kind of guy I like to root for. I’ll make a point of watching him when I can this spring and summer.

      • macspak says:

        I love football players. Develin is a football player. Ninkovich is a football player. Grogan was a football player. You need football players to win.

  16. Jeff says:

    Random thought, but I’m wondering if the Pats try out Cyrus Jones at Safety. If I remember correctly, he’s a willing tackler, and perhaps his traits could be maximized in a slightly different role, where he still lines up in the slot from time to time (like Chung).

    • Stephen J says:

      If Cyrus Jones moved to Safety it would be as a FS and he would be behind McCourty and Harmon on the depth chart. Chung is the SS and although serviceable at the slot position not ideal.

      • macspak says:

        I don’t think we’ve seen enough of Jones to know if he can play CB. His real troubles were as a punt returner, which sapped his overall confidence. I think he still is in the mix as a CB. Punt returner, not so sure.

  17. Stephen J says:

    Another story that was reported today was Christine Michael. Did you know that in a trade that sent Michael to the Cowboys the Seahawks received a conditional 7th round pick that was eventually sent to the Pats and the player selected with that pick was Devin Lucien.

  18. Stephen J says:

    One thing to keep an eye on this weekend is Kicker Josh Gable. This weekend maybe telling. The reason I say that is I remember reading somewhere that Josh also had another tryout lined up after this past weekend with the Pats. Even though he hasn’t signed on with the Pats if he doesn’t try out with another team in their rookie camp this weekend it could be a sign the Pats remain interested and are willing to work with him.

    • steve earle says:

      Not that unusual for Bill to bring in one or two kickers/ punters to camp so quite possible. Gable is an intriguing prospect judging by his promotional tape. Has the leg strength and accuracy, at least when not under pressure. Brings up a question would Bill drop/trade Gost who missed a few last season? If so what would be the market asking price? It’s the old question do you stay with the proven or risk moving to try to upgrade?

  19. Stephen J says:

    Here is a post with a video of every player selected in the 2017 NFL Draft.

    Thought you may like it.

  20. macspak says:


    Thanks for all your hard work and insight. While we currently are in a sports news lull that won’t last for long. I look forward to your future posts. Hopefully others will continue to use this thread and continue to post now and later. With posts like below from Stephen J the withdrawals won’t be too bad.

    That reminds me of something I’ve been meaning to post but keep forgetting. namely, the concept that suddenly the Patriots are going all in because Brady’s end is near. His end theoretically has been near now for a few years plus it is not like we are signing 30 something year old likes Mangold, Revis, Gore, Forte, Harrison etc. We are signing players in the prime of their careers who will contribute now and for the foreseeable (NFL) future. Plus, we drafted 4 players and look at the roster. Not even room, maybe, for those 4. Where the hell were we going to put 7,8 or 9? Nowhere, that is where.

    • steve earle says:

      Mac, you kind of hit on the idea I just can’t shake with your observation that BB looks to have gone “all in” this year. In the back of my mind is it completely impossible that BB and TB are looking for that one more SB trophy to be alone at the top before one or both retire and that’s why Jimmy G was not traded? Yea Tom says he wants to play until 45 yo but is that really his plan? Maybe I’m crazy thinking this but who knows?

      • Stephen J says:

        Nobody is guaranteed tomorrow just sit back and enjoy the team that BB is building for this year. Just because BB is building the team differently this year doesn’t mean he is all in this year as compared to other years. He is definitely thinking outside the box this year and exploring all avenues to make this team better. Just when you think how can this team get better after winning the SB and loosing some quality players. BB and company out do themselves again. It’s a thing of beauty.

        • steve earle says:

          So very true and to watch the process from afar is still a joy. I am constantly driven to anguish then relief and amazement. What other team anywhere can compare?

  21. Stephen J says:

    1 As much as I don’t like Jonathan Freeny I like Harvey Langi even less as a LB. The best thing I can say is that he seems to identify the run pretty well and can be decent at stopping it (the run) at times. He is just inconsistent in doing so. For every play he makes he will give up(be beat/out of place) 2-3 plays. He will have a hard time making it to the practice squad let alone 53 man roster if he doesn’t become more consistent and do his job. The Pats need to find somebody at LB because they will be hurting if the LB’s get struck with the injury bug. Right now I see Brooks Ellis as the leading candidate as a reserve back up. To me he is Brandon Spikes 2.0. Most people remember Brandon’s 40 time and say he was too slow not athletic enough but most probable don’t remember or even knew he ran a sub 7.0 3 Cone. Now Ellis isn’t as much a thumper as Brandon was but he plays similar to him. The one thing that Langi has that Spikes had but in a different sense is the IT factor but it needs a lot of work. Now if the Pats are looking for a LB that plays special teams as well say good bye to both Langi and Ellis. Ellis is instinctual and can make plays that is why he hardly ever came off the field in Arkansas but running down the field as a special teamer to make plays is not his game. Maybe that is why they hosted free-agent LB Andrew Gachkar today after rookie training camp. Even though Freeny is the best of this bunch because he can play both special teams and LB in a backup role I don’t see him back mainly due to his health (shoulder injuries).

    2 Jacob Hollister vs James O’Shaughnessy. I see both as polar opposites. Hollister is a great gadget that catches the ball well but doesn’t block and isn’t a run down the field and tackle special teamer but could potentially be a returner since he does make plays catching the ball, just not sure if that would translate to being a returner especially due to his speed and being unable to breakaway from tackles. While O’Shanughnessy can play special teams and is a decent blocker he hasn’t really shown the pass catching ability of Hollister but he maybe good enough in that department. While I like Hollister better I think O’Shaughnessy gets that spot for those reasons I just stated.

    3 There have been better receivers than Carr that have come in here and not made the 53 man roster or practice squad. His best chance is the practice squad but it seems like the Patriots are shifting their priorities and are looking at 1 More versitily WR’s not just a one trick pony(strickly a slot WR). 2 Guys who are already developed in the league. Which is what may end up happening here.

    4 David Jones reminds me of Ras I Dowling he has some talent but can’t stay on the field. At least Jones is a undrafted free agent and not a 2nd round pick. As far as him testing extremely well at his pro day he was below average in his Vertical at 34″, 20 Yard Shuttle at 4.32, 3 Cone at 7.31, and bench of 12. He was average in his 40 time at 4.43 and above average in his broad jump at 10’9″. I’m not sure how that qualifies as testing extremely well.

    5 Dwayne Thomas, Kenny Moore and DJ Killings will be competing for that slot position. This is the one I am the most interested in. Similar to last years competition. I believe it will come down to Thomas and Moore with one of them being picked up by another team after it’s all said and done. Now lets not forget Justin Coleman boy is this group going to be fun to monitor. A side note on Killings his smarts like Jordan Richards is what most likely got him an undrafted contract. Also like Richards his athleticism will likely hinder his career.

    6 Jason Thompson(Not Justin). I highlighted an article on him here ( as well as a couple of addendum’s or in addition to’s. He was the back up Safety that didn’t play Safety much and it showed but he was the Matthew Slater of Special Teams at Utah. Yes he was that good. Now will that and his freakish athleticism be enough to get him on the practice squad at minimum I don’t know.

    7 Josh Augusta and Adam Butler two very different players heading in opposite directions. Josh Augusta needs to drop weight to become the athletic specimen he was. While Butler is the over achiever who needs to add weight without it affecting his play. If you haven’t seen Butler’s spin moves they are a thing of beauty. Plus as I mentioned previously in an interview Butler said He loves the challenge of destroying double teams. I will destroy a Double Team. Double Teams are non-effective on me. I love Double Teams that means it free’s up one of my guys usually Zach Cunningham to fly to the ball. This is another position that will be interesting to see how it plays out.

    8 LeShun Daniels main competition as I stated before will be Brandon Bolden. If he can beat out Bolden by playing special teams as Bolden does and be that back up when needed he can land a spot.

    9 Max Rich. I believe over time he can beat out Conor McDermott. Will he get that chance by landing on the practice squad. I don’t know but I believe in his potential and think his upside is higher than McDermott’s. With that said McDermott’s starting point is higher and Max Rich maybe the one on the outside looking in.

  22. Jeff says:

    Thanks Mike, love the article and the site. Enjoy the summer!

  • Categories

  • Search NEPD Archives

  • Archives