Scouting Report: Isaiah Oliver, DB

If the Patriots lose Butler this off season, does Corner become a high priority come draft day?

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

As promised, I am back with another report. This is the second time I am writing this report because for some reason when I saved this morning, it disappeared. Needless to say, I am not happy. Trust me, I had a fantastic opening. Something about Colorado and liking Akhello Witherspoon and, well… It just hurts to much to try and recreate that internet gold. So, without the fanfare, here is my report.

Name: Isaiah Oliver (#26)

School: University of Colorado (Jr.)

Height: 6’1″ (unofficial)

Weight: 195 Lbs. (unofficial)

 

Positives:

Oliver has ideal size for the position. He is tall with long arms, broad shoulders and overall is well built. Oliver has a track background and you can see that speed translate to the field. He has some of the best recovery speed I can remember seeing since I started doing this. Oliver shows the ability to turn his head and look for the ball while still mirroring the Wide Receiver. He has experience in both press and man coverage as well as zone, so he has versatility from a scheme standpoint. He does a good job of tracking the ball and getting his hands on it. He plays with a lot of confidence and swagger, which I like in my Corners.

Negatives:

Right now, it seems like Oliver relies on his speed and athleticism over technique to put himself in situations to succeed. This will need to change if he wants to be consistently successful in the NFL. While he shows the ability to turn his head and locate the ball, it is inconsistent. His footwork can be sloppy and he gets flat footed. He has used his recovery speed to minimize this issue, but in the NFL, that won’t be the case. While he does show scheme versatility, he is most comfortable when asked to run with a guy and he seems to struggle with zone scheme concepts. As a taller player, he does struggle with change of direction. Again, part of this has to do with his footwork and I think it is something he can at least improve on. He is aggressive and it does lead to more pass interference calls that I would like to see.

Overall:

Oliver has a lot of potential and if he can clean up some of his technical issues, he could end up one of those Corners that opposing QB’s just don’t throw at. He has shown that he can be a play maker and with some good coaching, he could be a true shutdown Corner. He is not a finished product and he could have some growing pains early in his career, but he has a very high ceiling. I think he is a top 50 player in this draft, but I would not be shocked if he hears his name called on Day 1.

 

114 Responses to “Scouting Report: Isaiah Oliver, DB”

  1. Stephen J says:

    I’ve heard about NorthWestern’s RB Justin Jackson a few weeks ago and wanted to see more of him since and was waiting to see how he did this week. Well this morning I did more research on him specifically his carry/fumble ratio while I was researching that I found out he became NorthWestern’s all time Leading Rusher and he finished his career 10th among the NCAA’s leading rushers with 5,440 yards. Now between rushing attempts and receptions he touched the ball a whooping 1264 times and fumbled 4 times which means he fumbles the ball 1 out of every 316 touches. That places him 1st in this years RB class in this category of those I charted just ahead of RB Ronald Jones of USC who fumbles the ball 1 in 311 touches(623 touches/2 lost fumbles).

  2. Stephen J says:

    Day 3 East Practice Notes Shrine Game

    OSU LB Chris Worley vs. USF RB D’Ernest Johnson in a pass rush/block drill. Worley wins.

    OSU LB Chris Worley laying the smack down on USF RB D’Ernest Johnson on a running play in team drills

    From Jeff Risdon In Passing Drills OSU LB Chris Worley darn near stripped Minnesota State TE Damon Gibson’s jersey off

    Slippery Rock DE Marcus Martin used a delay then sidestepped Miami Fl OT KC McDermott outside shoulder and went flying by him for a would-be sack.

    WR Daesean Hamilton roasted PSU teammate Grant Haley on an outside cut.

    Per Trevor Sikkema CB Avonte Maddox(5-9, 180) is having a really nice week. Playing with the first team now. Closing/recovery speed is very nice.

    FSU LB Jacob Pugh decleated TE Damon Gibson from Minnesota State-Moorhead after the catch. What a hit. Props to Gibson for holding onto ball after that hit.

    DT Deadrin Senat anchors then tosses C Brad Lundblade aside like a rag doll to get the run stop

    Penn WR Justin Watson having a nice day in 1 vs 1’s 3 catches.

    OSU S Damon Webb with the Int after being tipped into the air by Pitt CB Avonte Maddox from a pass by OSU QB JT Barrett to Red 28

    UNI WR Daurice Fountain showing up in 1 vs 1’s and team drills again today. Caught everything thrown in his direction. Also playing with OSU QB JT Barrett and the 1’s.

    Injury Update

    Syracuse OT Jamar McGloster, who left in an ambulance yesterday, is back at East practice today with a cast on his right hand/wrist

    Fordham RB Chase Edmonds did not practice today was icing ankle

    Now here are some notes I pulled together from Ryan Booher who has been right there on scene this week

    East practice has been weird in that the two ‘names’ at the WR spot have their share of struggles. Penn St DeaSean Hamilton has let far too many balls into his frame, has not looked natural catching the rock away from his frame.

    Pitt WR Jester Weah was pretty non-descript both practices, and has had some struggles creating separation and has had a few drops throughout the week so far

    Conversely, two guys who have stood out have been Daurice Fountain of Northern Iowa and Justin Watson of Penn. Fountain has a very well put together, well proportioned frame. Had a drop yesterday but has shown really good transition skills after the catch. Has some suddenness

    As for Justin Watson, the combination of how quick his feet are and how efficient he is with his movements had my eyes struggling to believe he measured in slightly over 6’2

    Last year Shrine practices had quite a few TE’s who really stood out, other than a couple catches with a defender glued to him by David Wells, it has been a pretty tough week for the group on both the East and the West. Lots of drops and not much separation at all

    Brian Allen has been exactly the same player you saw from Michigan State. Never physically dominant yesterday, yet also won most of his individual matchups

    NC St DE Kentavius Street is a very large, strong dude. Had an offsides, one rep where he lost his balance and Mich St C Brian Allen got him to the ground. Smoked W Va G Kyle Bosch quickly as well

    USF DT Deadrin Senat showed a pretty strong anchor vs double teams and was able to keep his shoulders square to the LOS. Has been a tough assignment for his man

    UConn DT Folorunso Fatukasi has been very impressive, had Ok St C Brad Lundblade on skates back to back reps

  3. Stephen J says:

    Here is another in depth analysis of this weeks practices at the East West Shrine Game

    https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-(monday-Tuesday)

  4. Stephen J says:

    Well the East West Shrine game is not the only College game this weekend with practices happening. The NFLPABowl or Collegiate Bowl is also happening. There are a few prospects that I’m keeping my eye on.

    The first is CB Charvarius Ward from Middle Tenn. Why Charvarius Ward you ask well if you don’t know he is both Glover Quin’s and Malcolm Butler’s cousin. He plays very much like Malcolm does and he’s spoken with at least a half dozen teams in the last two days.

    The second prospect that I’ve been waiting to see and hear more from is JSU (Jacksonville St) EDGE Darius Jackson. He is my top small school prospect this year. He is fun to watch. He was just voted 2017’s Buck Buchanan Award winner which is given to the FCS’ top defensive player. Well you may say he’s from a small school what about facing the big boys. Well in 2016 he went against LSU and he had 5 Tackles 1 Sack 2 TFL 1 Pass Deflection and 1 FF. Not surprisingly with those stats against LSU he is the schools all time sack leader with 20.5 and the schools all time TFL leader with 40.0. He is listed as 6’3″ 242 lbs on JSU’s website and has a combine invite.

    The last player that I’m keeping my eyes on is Tulane’s CB Parry Nickerson. He is 6’0″ 180 lbs. He had 6 Int’s 48 Solo Tackles 2.0 TFL and 8 PBU’s. PFF had him with a 43.2 passer rating when targeted which led all AAC draft eligible CB’s. Parry can also get down the field in a hurry on Special Teams and make open field tackles.

  5. Stephen J says:

    In an interview tonight with Zach Goodall

    Northwestern RB Justin Jackson told Zach he models his game after LeSean McCoy for his elusiveness. Considers himself to be an “every-down type of back”, and believes he can succeed in power or zone blocking schemes.

    Well he used some of that elusiveness to break free and stamper down the field for a big gain today.

    • kevin z says:

      was jw what round do you see him going in? would he be worth it for our Pats? sounds interesting hoping get a RB that is versatile just in case lewis leaves. plus Lewis N Burkhead haven’t proven to be durable. I do like lewis and Burkhead very much though

      • Stephen J says:

        Not sure where he falls right now to tell you the truth. Usually players in the Shrine Game are mid to late and undrafted players. He definitely hasn’t been mentioned all that much up until now. It may come down to how he does in the game itself and if he gets a call up to the Senior Bowl due to injury as well as the combine to where he goes.

  6. Stephen J says:

    One the questions I can hear being asked is what about Joe Ostman. Remember last year and Hunter Dimick. Joe Ostman reminds of him and his situation. Someone that was very productive in college but went undrafted mainly because of his short arm length. I am asking myself is he this years version of Hunter Dimick because of his short arms as well.

  7. EdgeX says:

    Good news: for Marcus Davenport. Matt Miller says with a big week in the senior bowl he can see his stock rise to a 1st round draft pick.

    Bad news: for Patriot’s fans the chances he’s around at their first draft pick just got slimmer.

  8. Stephen J says:

    Colorado’s RB Phillip Lindsay may only be 5’07 3/8″ but he can pass protect picked up the blitz well. Nice quick cuts but don’t ask him to kick FG’s his went up about 30 feet but only 15 feet forward.

    Poona Ford no match against Cody O’Connell on a running play but Ford blows by Utah’s G Salesi Uhatafe on another running play with ease. Nice initial burst. Ford for the most part struggling to get off of blocks.

    As a side note. The one problem with Cody O’Connell’s size is his size when playing him at Left Guard. QB’s have a hard time seeing past over him when throwing on his side. The guy is just massive. Just about all the running plays went to his side while the passing plays went to the other side.

    Az CB Dane Cruikshank with a nice pick and return. Cruikshank also breaks up a pass from Sam Houston St QB Jeremiah Briscoe to Miss St WR Jordan Thomas. Cruikshank has played CB and FS. More like Devin Mccourty than Patrick Chung.

    Northwestern RB Justin Jackson with a nice move to break free and get out into the open.

    Illinois State DB Davonte Harris knows how to lay the hammer down but doesn’t wrap up. On another play Harris deflects a pass.

    Nebraska CB Joshua Kalu gets beat deep by WR Jake Weinke but comes up with a nice tip on outstretched arms to breakup the pass at the last moment.

    Man it doesn’t matter where and who lines up against Joe Ostman he is making plays all over the field earlier he had a swim move to beat Ark St TE Blake Mack then another swim move to beat San Diego St TE David Wells on the same play to get into the backfield. Ostman then beat LT Greg Senat (who has been one of the better OT out here for the west) to the inside to get into the backfield. The play had moved to the right side and throw already made but for a guy with short arms no one seem to get a hold of him or contain him.

    RT Greg Senat pancakes Arkansas St Ja’Von Rolland-Jones. As a side note Greg Senat won a 60 yard dash among the OL man.

    Joe Ostman once again this time he beats Oklahoma St RT Zachary Crabtree with ease.

    Troy, Jordan Chunn (6-3, 235) able to get to outside and turn upfield for some yards.

    Another name today that also showed up yesterday is Missouri DE Marcell Frazier who used his length and burst to get pressure a couple of times today.

    Eric Galko’s West Practice
    Tuesday “Winners”:

    #Northwestern RB Justin Jackson
    @GoJacksFB WR Jake Wieneke
    #Nebraska CB Josh Kalu
    #Arizona CB Dane Cruikshank
    #Colorado SAF Afolabi Laguda

    • Stephen J says:

      DraftBreakdowns Justin: West Standouts of the day

      West standouts: Marcell Frazier DE Mizzou, Dane Cruikshank DB UA, Dejon Allen OL Hawaii, Phillip Lindsay RB CU, Justin Jackson RB NU

      Few more West players who had a good day: Secdrick Cooper DB LT, Davontae Harris CB Illinois St, Josh Kalu CB Nebraska, Bilal Nichols DL Delaware, and Bryce Bobo WR CU

      • steve earle says:

        Question’s: Do you think Cody O’Connell could switch to RT? The narrative that quicker DT’s will just run around him seem accurate to you after watching him at LG? Is he likely to move up or down in draft evals?

        • Stephen J says:

          That’s hard to say I’ve just seen him play G where it is short area quickness where as Tackle you have way more area to cover. He can cover up his slowness(speed) being at G not so much at T. When they ran the 60 yard dash he was last and it wasn’t even close. Strength and short area quickness he has. Speed and Stamina(being able to cover distances and breaking out of his stances) he does not. Now is that quickness and strength good enough for T I would tend to say no but realistically I don’t know.

        • Stephen J says:

          As far as moving up or falling down draft boards that’s also hard to say. As the saying goes all it takes is one. That maybe determined in the game this weekend. So stay tuned and find out.

      • steve earle says:

        Sounds reasonable re OT and agree his 6-8 1/2 is issue at guard but I can’t help being intrigued by his blocking ability. Wish I could see the game but staying tuned for your reports.

  9. Daniel Sullivan says:

    First Gillete Stadium needs to step up with security. When people are acting like
    animals steeling wheelchairs from disabled. You have a Pats ticket not a license to be a animal.

    Patriots Mock Draft
    1 Chukwuma Okorafor OT Western Michigan
    2 Lorenzo Carter OLB Georgia
    2 Deontay Burnett WR USC
    3 Mike Hughes CB Central Florida
    4 Anthony Everett CB Alabama
    6 Adam Breneman TE Umass

    I saw Jaguars against Patriots this year they are very good DB’s must have a great game for Patriots to win.

    Finally Red Sox move on from Martinez not the leader Sox need sign Neil Walker INF and
    Logan Morrison 1B/DH and think “Spring Traing”.

    Go Pats!

  10. JH says:

    Question for anyone to answer… would you rather have a QB with a big arm but just an average release, or a QB with just average arm strength and a lightning quick release?

    Reason I ask is because I now have 2 favorites at the position, Alex McGough from FIU (who I’ve touched on) and Kyle Lauletta from Richmond.

    They both are relatively similar… but the biggest difference is what I’m describing above.

    McGough has a big arm and can virtually throw a fast ball in any situations, but his release isn’t lightning quick. It’s very smooth and looks to be mechanically sound, but just isn’t super fast.

    Lauletta, meanwhile, can only get good velocity on the ball if his steps into it perfectly, and even then he sometimes doesn’t always get the ball going too fast. However, his release is super quick.

    I’m looking forward to how Lauletta does in the Senior Bowl which may answer any questions about his arm strength. McGough on the other hand will probably only have his pro day to show off his arm, unless if he gets an unexpected invite to the combine. There are some FIU football highlights on youtube that highlight his potential (which I think are worth watching), but other than that there is limited tape on him. Anyways, what do y’all think? Arm strength or quick release?

    • GM-in-Training says:

      You want a QB who can make all the throws accurately with a quick release.

      Kurt Warner was one of the original quick release guys. He cut his teeth in the Arena League where seeing quickly and releasing quickly was necessary for survival.

      It’s harder to measure how quickly a QB thinks than how quickly he releases, but those two are only really useful if they go together.

      • JH says:

        Agreed. McGough has a smooth thowing motion and although his release isn’t super fast its not slow either. The question is whether or not its quick ENOUGH, which I don’t know the answer to.

        Lauletta needs to prove he has enough arm strength at the senior bowl, which I’m eager to see. He no doubt already has the quick release going for him.

    • Stephen J says:

      Here is an in depth Scouting Report I posted Previously on Lauletta

      https://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/pittsburgh-steelers-nfl-features-news-blog-long-form/2017/10/28/16552726/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-potential-senior-qb-riser-kyle-lauletta-ben-roethlisberger-replacement-nfl?utm_campaign=behindthesteelcurtain&utm_content=entry&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter

      In it, it says Lauletta has sufficient arm strength to test a secondary deep at approximately the 50-55 yard range, even when throwing from the far hash.(There’s video that shows him doing so)
      While his arm strength is sufficient, he doesn’t fit every system. He’s best suited for a west coast timing-based offense.

      Hope this helps answer your question

      • Stephen J says:

        Here is something else to consider while in and of itself from a statistical point of view it may not be an accurate accessment but look at their Y/A. Lauletta isn’t the one you should be concerned about throwing the deep ball

        Here is Alex McGough

        https://www.foxsports.com/college-football/alex-mcgough-player-stats

        Here is Kyle Lauletta

        https://www.foxsports.com/college-football/kyle-lauletta-player-stats

        Now not saying this is the case but Alex McGough seems to dink and dink more often than throw it deep than Kyle Lauletta does on average. You like to see a college QB ave 8.0 Y/A. He doesn’t even reach that.

        The other thing that concerns me about McGough is he had a bad freshman year, a good sophmore year, back to a bad junior year, and a good senior year. He is inconsistent.
        That’s just my take though and like I posted previously I AM PICKY.

        • JH says:

          I’m picky too, but I think with scouting a player thats not a bad thing!!

          I hear you’re points about McGough, but let me counter them for a sec. I am definitely NOT worried about the deep ball with him. If you watch him play he clearly has the arm for it and is very accurate throwing deep. Not only does he get it there with ease but its where the receiver wants it too.

          I think the yards per attempt is lower simply because of the offense he’s in. It’s not that he’s just throwing the first read or easy throw all the time either, you can see that he makes multiple reads often.

          Additionally, you mention 8.0 is a good threshold and he was at 7.9 his final year, so I think thats pretty much close enough. It was much lower than that the first three years, but he actually played mostly in a pro-style offense for his first 3 years under the same coach (until that coach was fired midseason the 3rd year) and then the spread his last year, so that was also probably a product of the offense he was in. If anything, it shows he has experience and can learn a new playbook quickly.

          As far as the decline in production during McGough’s junior year goes, there are numerous factors that play apart in that. He missed the last 3 games due to injury, which was a broken left wrist (non-throwing arm). His coach was fired midseason, so in the 9 games he played, 4 were with one coach and 5 were with another. The 2 best receivers on the team missed a combined 6 games. They didn’t have a single offensive lineman that had more than 1 year of experience. In summary, a mixture of youth, injury, and unfamiliarity all played into the decline, so I don’t think it’s fair to criticize him too harshly for the dip in production.

          With Lauletta, it actually details in that article you put up about him that his deep ball accuracy is “inconsistent”, and I can see this on film too. I know it says his arm strength is “sufficient”, but sometimes on film it just seems like he can’t get much under it. Like I said though, he may alleviate those concerns at the senior bowl and if he does he may become my favorite QB prospect over McGough.

    • steve earle says:

      This is a classic question of intangibles. It will come down to can one or either overcome the weakness of their game to be successful in the pros?

  11. Stephen J says:

    Michigan State C Brian Allen been showing up the last 2 days both from a physical technique point of view and from a Football IQ point of view. Been holding his ground against the big DT’s and corrected a QB’s pre snap call because the QB read it wrong.

    LB Chris Worley blows by RB Chase Edmunds in pass rush blocking drill for an easy would be QB sack.
    After that play Edmunds left to trainers and appears to have sprained his ankle. Was done for the day.
    Later in interviews Worley said that he wanted to show he was more than a coverage LB

    QB JT Barrett has been the East’s most stand out QB through 2 practices. Today he put the ball between(split) 2 defenders to hit his WR on one play. Then placed it right on a TE on another play. He did throw a pass behind a TE which the TE tipped and CB DeVonta'(Dee) Delaney Miami Fl Intercepted it.
    CB Dee Delaney also pressed Pitts Jester Weah off the line in one play but also turn and ran well today.

    Mean while Quinton Flowers after a few reps was moved to Punt returner where he fielded Punts for the rest of the day.

    Jaryn Jones-Smith OT Pitt (long arms) went head to head against Chad Thomas DE Miami FL. 1st rep Thomas won by getting Jones-Smith to jump offsides then Jones-Smith rebounded by keeping Thomas at bay with those long arms of his.

    Syracuse OT Jamar McGloster who was having a good showing in pass protection(3 straight reps) in one play he kept DE Curtis Cothran Penn St contained on the outside by shuffling his feet using his hands and finally pushing him out away from the would be QB. He ended up leaving in an ambulance with what appeared to be a right arm injury.

    Yesterday I mentioned UNI WR Daurice Fountain well he showed up today. He showed off that speed and cutting ability in one play where he made a cut to get open on the sideline then cut it back in weaved his way through traffic and turned on the after burners for the would be TD. He then made a couple more catches the 1st one of those catches in traffic and then took that one to the house. The 2nd one was an under thrown pass from Riley Ferguson which he adjusted and came back to in order to make the catch along the sideline. He seemed to be Riley Ferguson’s go to guy here.

    Riley Ferguson has been inconsistent in his placement in the 1st 2 practices. Yesterday scouts said he has that Tom Brady build when TB was coming out of college.

    WR DaeSean Hamilton of Penn St had some early practice drops but had some separation in the slot

    FSU LB Matthew Thomas came up limping in a pass rush drill early on. Didn’t appear to be anything serious as he continued to play through it initially but didn’t see/hear anything else from him the rest of practice.

    Another name that keeps coming up but I haven’t seen anything from is Miami OL KC McDermott. Meaning he could be making plays but I haven’t seen any.

  12. kevin z says:

    Updated Mock (old one sticking with it):
    2nd – Duke Ejiorfor DE Wake Forest: this pick for depth plus learn from trey Flowers n Wise.
    2nd (trade) – OT Tyrell Crosby, Oregon: for help Protecting Brady extending career for Goat Key.
    2nd – RB Sony Michel GA Binkie: this goes with extending Brady. can protect him plus rush catch.
    3rd (trade) – LB M Kiser : Depth for Hightower also could lose Marquis Flowers.
    3rd –DT Poona Ford: branch will Gone nice have him learn from Brown and Guy.
    4th –OT Cunningham: Depth for line to help protect Brady goes along extending him
    6th – RB Ryan Nall, Oregon State: Nice Depth plus help short yardage. lewis burkehead Bolden may not be here long term
    7th –Coles Rayes SS N.Dak: Getting old there nice to learn from Chung before he gone

  13. Stephen J says:

    Well apparently those measurements that I posted yesterday weren’t the actual they were the estimates they had before they did the actual. So here is a link to that has the actual info that also includes arm lengths wing spans.

    http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/news/nfl-draft-2018-east-west-shrine-game-rosters-measurements-all-star-game/a87i5kgaed201n84dla01vi4m

    One noticeable change for me was Deadrin Senat who was estimated at 305 lbs but actual was 322 so you may want to take a look at it to see your player

    Some notables Poona Ford DT TX Arm Length 33 1/2 309 lbs 5’11”

    Foley Fatukasi DT Conn 6’3 3/4″ 34 5/8″ Arm Length 318 lbs

    Greg Stroman 174 lbs

    Chad Thomas DE Miami 6’5 1/8″ 34 1/8″ Arm Length 276 lbs

    Cody O’Connell G Wash St 6’8 1/2″ 365 lbs 35 5/8″ Arm Length

  14. Matt says:

    2018 Pats Mock Draft

    Here me out here: Re-sign Solder for 1-2 more years

    1st – Rashaan Evans LB Alabama
    2nd – Sony Michel RB Georgia (Gillesle likely gone and wouldn’t be surprised if Burked prices himself out of New England)
    2nd – Duke Ejiofor, DE, Wake Forest (We desperately need more edge rushers)
    3rd – CB Tavares McFadden FSU (CB depth since Malcolm Butler is most likely gone)
    4th – (Projected Compensatory) Jaylen Samuels TE NC State (Move TE since Dwayne Allen is good as gone)
    4th – (Projected Compensatory) Luke Falk QB Washington State (Developmental QB)
    6th – OT prospect
    7th – (Projected Compensatory) DT or WR prospect

    • kevin z says:

      Really like your Mock Matt just for the Sony pick he my Binkie he good in all areas. rush catch block. finds little holes well.
      had duke in my draft as well in another post so like that pick as well.
      liked how picked position of needs so liked your Mock in general

    • steve earle says:

      Good mock but not convinced Burkhead will leave. More likely Lewis will be looking at offers from outside. Sure hope he gets resigned. Really like Sony, been watching him for two years now and think he would be a better fit then his running mate Chubb for us. Thing there is if Bill resigns both Lewis and Burkhead and with White we will still have arguably the best RBs fits in the NFL. Adding Sony would be a luxury I question we could afford? If we should loose Lewis or Burkhead then I’m with you though I’m hoping we don’t. I still want those DE & OLB guys early. My “binkies” are Davenport and Ejiorfor, can’t help it.

  15. Stephen J says:

    I know some of you mentioned Washington St Cody O’Connell. Today he played G. Trevor Sikkema said Cody surprised and impressed him for how well he shuffled his feet readjust where he was blocking for someone his size.

    • steve earle says:

      Russell and I noted that earlier in this process (how well he moves for a man his size) and the guy has not been playing against stiffs so reading how well he protects his QB is no fluke. I don’t have a pkg on my TV network that lets me see the all star games, NFL network and things so hoping you will keep updating as you have been. Thanks Stephen.

  16. Stephen J says:

    West Practice notes

    Central Michigan Joe Ostman fires off line beating TE into backfield making a stop on the RB. DE Joe Ostman just put his man on spin cycle for the sack in 1-on-1s

    Colorado Wr Bryce Bobo getting congratulated by a coach for blocking on a run. Bobo also getting open consistently(2 different analysts.)
    Colorado WR Bryce Bobo has scouts talking. Smooth mover, good acceleration today. Ran a tandem route with D. Boyd and was noticeably faster off line

    Very nice throw and catch off play action from @TexasTechFB QB Nic Shimonek to @CSURams WR Bobo Bryce in the first play of the scrimmage.

    QB Nic Shimonek goes deep for Oklahoma WR Jeff Badet, but it was snagged by Wisconsin S Natrell Jamerson for the INT.

    UNLV WR Devonte Boyd easily the best routes in West practice in 1-on-1 drills. Power + acceleration. WR Devonte Boyd with a beautiful cut premier release & footwork.

    Oklahoma WR Jeff Badet smoked Villanova CB Malik Reaves up the right sideline.

    Villanova’s Malik Reaves with a nice interception.

    QB Jeremiah Briscoe lets it fly for WR Jake Wieneke, but S Cole Reyes comes in to break it up at the end.
    QB Jeremiah Briscoe rips one to Wieneke for a catch and run.

    Wagner OT Greg Senat. 6’8” converted basketball player. Runs pretty well too.

    DB Joshua Kalu with the INT in 1-on-1’s. Great timing and balance.

    llinois State CB Davontae Harris, who has some scouting buzz has excellent recovery speed

    Justin Jackson (Northwestern RB21) breaks one and goes the distance

    Ja’Von Rolland-Jones (11) is a noted pass rusher, but has a great run stop

    1 Watching Jake Wieneke he’s pretty darn impressive He just made a great catch down the field, shows tracking ability on a bad throw, adjusted nicely to ball being on opposite shoulder
    2 WR Jake Wieneke has made 4+ plays on the ball that have made me whistle. He’s looked superb.
    3 Just throw it in his area – Jake Wieneke will come down with it. Having a great day 1 of practice

    Mizzou DE Marcell Frazier flies in for a sack, as SMU DE Justin Lawler converges from the near side(This from Pewter Report Marcell Frazier has ideal size and a good wingspan to rush the passer.)

  17. Stephen J says:

    Here are some observations from many different analysts at the Shrine Game East Practice I gathered up for you.

    NC State DL Kentavius Street was in the backfield three times in a row in team drills. Very quick off the ball. Received snaps at DE and got immediate pressure. Street batted a JT Barrett pass off a play fake. Street skied for the ball, almost tipped to himself for an INT

    Brandon Facyson/CB/Va Tech made a terrific play

    Deadrin Senat/DT/USF has really active and violent hand usage in running drills. Impossible to move off point despite double teams and bullrushing blockers off line. C Brian Allen Michigan St had a good rep against Senat got the best of him early but Senat finished

    Virginia Tech CB Greg Stroman was icing his hamstring

    Fordham RB Chase Edmonds had a nice day. Showed burst balance and decisiveness. Exceptional hands catching the ball. Great back just a high fumble ratio.

    Chris Worley blew up a RB route play

    Miami’s Chad Thomas had a great first practice. Setting his edge, handling OTs in the run game. Gets off block for the sack

    SlipperyRock DE Marcus Martin knocked Auburn OT Austin Golson off his feet in running back drills. Then OT KC McDermott stones DE Marcus Martin

    UConnFootball DT Folorunso Fatukasi with the swim move on G Kyle Bosch to hit the RB in the backfield.

    JT Barrett, Quinton Flowers and Riley Ferguson all had rough days with tipped batted balls and Int’s

    UNI WR Daurice Fountain. Difficult to cover, can cut at speed, feisty.

    WR Daesean Hamilton Penn St Great hand use to avoid the jam

  18. Stephen J says:

    Yes Finally its Shrine Week Practices have begun Woo Hoo

  19. John says:

    Quick Mock:

    1. Ronnie Harrison Alabama SAF: Replace Chung, roam the box. Not a single-high SAF, but can cover within the chains. High football IQ, explosive downfield athlete.

    2. Trenton Thompson Georgie DL: Explosive talent. Got hurt. Character? Maybe with high character draft class will come in focused. Destroyed CFP final. Plays with more consistency he’s a stud.

    2. DJ Moore Maryland WR: Slot WR that can handle outside duties. High character, good speed, and special team ability. Think Golden Tate.

    3. Darius Phillips Western Michigan CB: Tough corner, MAC first-teamer (as both a corner and reutrn guy). Can play. Was a ‘Cuse guy.

    Let me know your thoughts!

    • Stephen J says:

      Nice now who would be your 2nd choice if Harrison went before the Pats picked? 2nd choice doesn’t have to be with 1st pick either

      Don’t think the Pats would pick up a slot receiver in the 2nd round the highest drafted slot receiver was in the 4th outside of that the highest one was a 2nd round trade for Wes Welker who was already a proven NFL slot receiver with return experience.

      As far as the slot goes look for Jacksonville’s Marqise Lee who is a Free Agent next year as a possibility. He was drafted in the 2nd round 39th overall in 2014.

      If we were to draft a WR I’d probably go with an outside or big WR being Malcolm Mitchell injury problems and recently picked up WR Kenny Brit was a healthy scratch last night after playing one week.

    • steve earle says:

      Why a Saf with 1st? Not a position of need. Has Chung not played well?

      • Stephen J says:

        He turns 31 this year with him in the last year of his contract. BB usually finds a replacement a year before a starter leaves so there is a fluid transition with less chances of breakdowns(growing pains) happening from learning the system and being in sync with the others in the backfield.

        • steve earle says:

          Maybe but is 1st rd the spot to take a SAF when our 31 yo is still playing well even if it is the last year of current contract? I just don’t think it is.

        • Stephen J says:

          I didn’t say to take one there. Chung was taken in the 2nd behind Devin Mccourty. There are a lot of real good safeties this year or lb who could play safety.

        • steve earle says:

          Sorry Stephen I was responding to John’s mock above having one in the 1st. I’d like a Saf but later. Coles Rayes N Dak would be a nice day 3 pick IMO. Still not sure where he might be picked. Staying tuned on that one too.

    • Russell says:

      not a fan of S Harrison, I don’t see him as a 1st round guy. My 1st is Maurice Hurst, or Sam Hubbard, or Quin Blanding.

  20. steve earle says:

    Jacksonville is coming to town.

  21. Stephen J says:

    Who would you choose as your new Head Coach Josh McDaniels or Matt Patricia?

    • Stephen J says:

      Maybe because I’m a stat’s and numbers type of guy I’d go with Rocket Scientist Matt Patricia

      • steve earle says:

        Can’t tell because I never met either so can’t eval demeanor. All we know tells us either should be successful. Being an Off minded guy I’d go with McDaniels. Just a guess though.

    • Russell says:

      I think Matt Partrica will be a great head coach, and Detroit would be a nice fit, NOT the N.Y.G. however.

      • Stephen J says:

        The Giants were just being used as leverage to pressure the Lions ownership to select Matt Patricia same as the Colts were being used as leverage to pressure the Titans ownership to get Josh McDaniels. That has been the plan all along raise scouts under BB to be GM’s then bring in BB’s Coordinators as Head Coaches.

  22. kevin z says:

    since at this early stage SS LB RB deeper in this draft thinking OL along with LB top choices.
    more reason to trade for more 2nd rd picks to take my Binky Rb Sony Michel … Love can rush and catch the ball. Can pass Protect well. nice speed ,needs only smalls holes to slither through. Plus used to sharing the load with Chubb which sharing is needed with PaTS

    ATM wishing extended marquis Flowers instead of Eric Lee.
    With Langi along with Davis if extend Flowers LB wont be as much a need.
    if Do extend Flowers think DT gets picked first or 2nd in the draft

    • steve earle says:

      I’m still thinking DE and OLB at the top of our draft. Solder has been playing so well asking myself if BB will look to extend him? Answer to that determines how high OT priority will be. Still think interior 0-line needs to be stronger. Sony Mitchell is great prospect buy redundant unless Bill lets Lewis and White and Burkhead all go. Our D-line is playing really well but will Branch be back? If not I see us needing another big DT. Not convinced Valentine is that guy. Still sticking to my last mock at least until after the all star games and combine.

      • Stephen J says:

        Alan Branch was a healthy scratch this weekend against the Titans and hasn’t played in a month where the team has done well with out him. Ricky Jean Francois has filled Alan Branch’s position during that time. Look for him to be signed for a 1 to 2 year deal and then draft one in next years draft where it will be a good DT class.

        • Stephen J says:

          Snap Count DT’s along with a blurb from ESPN’s Mike Reiss

          DEFENSIVE TACKLE

          Malcom Brown: 29

          Adam Butler: 26

          Lawrence Guy: 23

          Ricky Jean Francois: 23

          The biggest surprise came before the game, when Alan Branch, who had declared himself healthy from a knee injury, was inactive. Jean Francois got the nod over him and seemed to perform well (one tackle, one sack)

  23. Stephen J says:

    Man it was the Brady Gronk Amendola and Lewis show last night for the Offense. What a clinic they put on I am savoring every moment of this and not taking it for granted. This is special and special is not an everyday occurrence.

    Pass Rush isn’t always the answer this from PFF Louie. Patriots sent more than four rushers at Mariota just seven times. On those plays, he went 5-for-6 for 54 yards, 1 TD, 143.8 passer rating. Now I’m not saying a Pass Rush isn’t needed that’s ridiculous it’s a balance of pass rush and pass coverage and that came when the Run D without Alan Branch shut down Derrick Henry and the Pats Offense got clicking in the 2nd Quarter and gained a lead and the Titans went into play from behind mode which made it easier for the D to win their one on one battles and get after the QB and boy did they ever another thing of beauty.

  24. Russell says:

    Patriots will be in a big transition year in 2018, if Partrica & McDaneils leave.
    Watched tape on CB Stroman, and DE Hubbard. Hubbard reminds me of Chandler Jones who was a Junior as well. Hubbard has his degree already, and looks like he has a high upside.
    Stroman looked fairly good, only 182 lbs. at 5’11 3/4″.

  25. Turbo says:

    My fav EDGE prospect Clelin Ferrell is going to stay another year, Austin Bryant is going back as well. This is a terrible EDGE class. The few i likes are: Chad Thomas, Duke Ejiofor, Lorenzo Carter (more like SAM) and Rasheem Green. I’m not going to say anything about Davenport until Senior bowl and scouting combine.

    • steve earle says:

      Surprised but think Ferrell was going to early for us anyway. What concerns me is that might cause another team to take someone we could draft for DE. Nothing we can do to effect any of this excep hope.

    • Stephen J says:

      Thanks Turbo for pointing out Rasheem Green from an initial view glance he reminds me of Willie McGinest. Will look at him more closely and also see how he is with setting the edge.

    • Stephen J says:

      As far as Davenport the Senior Bowl will do nothing to change anything. The only way outside of injury that things for Davenport change at the Senior Bowl is he gets totally dominated and doesn’t show up(unlikely). As long as he remains competitive he will be a 1st rounder and anything more than that is just icing on the cake for him. I expect him to be competitive make a few plays also have his weaknesses exposed which will be enough for him to seal the deal if you wish.

      • Stephen J says:

        For those wondering what weaknesses I’m talking about
        1 His East to West movement speed isn’t the greatest his north to south and initial burst is ridiculous. This is exposed when he doesn’t get out in front of a play say a running play where he does get out and seal the edge and then the RB moves across him in an east to west direction and he needs to change direction.
        2 His balance or lack of it costs him at times for the most part I believe that is just him growing into his body and adjusting to it and it shows up when he sees one thing then realizes its another and he has to make a quick adjustment.
        3 His lack of developed pass rush moves. Once the good players get familiar with his initial moves and makes adjustments he will be less effective. He will still make plays mind you just not as many of them.

      • Turbo says:

        I don’t think so. He played in an extremely weak division and he has to prove it in the Senior bowl, that he can compete in his first year in the NFL and more, than just a project. K-Pass and Melifonwu was the same athletic freak that he is and they went mid-to late 2nd round last year even tho everyone talked about them as borderline 1st round picks.

        So even if the EDGE class is terrible this year, i think he has to show off that he can beat higher level competition.

        • Stephen J says:

          There is a difference between a freak athlete who plays football and a football player who also is a freak athlete. You can only play who is put in front of you as BB would say. Now when you watch him he has technique it just needs refining and some enhancing. I see him much the same as two former Pats the first being Chandler Jones when he came out of Syracuse. People where saying the same things no way is he a 1st rounder. He has to prove himself. Yet BB traded up in the 1st to get him. The other person was Jamie Collins from Southern Miss faced the same criticism a freak athlete from small school but where do you play him. Many said he was a mid-late round pick but BB saw the skills techniques he developed from all those positions he played and refined/enhanced them.

  26. steve earle says:

    I’m wondering just what percentage of KO and punts we are actually returning? A good return can have an important impact but how often is that? The game has evolved largely into a kick and catch play at least in the pros. How much does that fact effect the value assigned to a returner I wonder?

  27. Stephen J says:

    Kick/Punt Returner options and their stats

    ………………..Punt Ret..Yards…Ave……TD……Kick Ret…Yards…..Average…TD
    Cyrus Jones
    Senior Year …42……….530…..12.62….4……..1…………24……….24.0…….0
    Career………..54……….673…..12.46….4……..15……….351………23.4……0

    Draft Possibilities

    Christian Kirk WR Texas A&M
    Junior Year….10……….191……19.1…..1……..22……….490………22.27……1
    Career……….37……….814……22.0…..6……..48……….1048…….21.83……1

    Mike Hughes CB UCF
    Junior Year….14……….233……16.64…1…….20………..635………31.75……2
    Career……….14……….233……16.64…1…….23………..741………32.22……2

    DJ Reed CB Kansas St
    Junior Year….17………253…….14.88…1…….17………..582………34.24……1
    Career……….17………253…….14.88…1…….26………..837………32.19……1

    Ito Smith RB Southern Miss
    Senior Year…0………..0………..0………0…….5…………94…………18.80……0
    Career……….0………..0………..0………0……26………..550……….21.15……0

    Darius Phillips CB Western Michigan
    Senior Year…13……..104……..8.0…….0……26………..683………..26.27…..2
    Career……….32…….327………10.22…1……129………3145……….24.38…..5

    Rashaad Penny RB San Diego St
    Senior Year…2………70……….35.0…..1……17………..521………..30.65……2
    Career………2……….70………35.0……1……81……….2499……….30.24……7

    Greg Stroman CB Virginia Tech
    Senior Year..35……..397…….11.34….2…….0…………0……………0…………0
    Career………127……1108…..8.72……4…….23……….478………..20.78……0

    Quadree Henderson WR Pitt
    Junior Year…21……..243…….11.57….2…….25……….524……….20.96……0
    Career………37……..495…….13.38….3…….73……….1942………26.60…..4

    Dante Pettis WR Washington
    Senior Year…21…….428……..20.38…4…….0…………0……………0………..0
    Career………90…….1274…….14.16…9…….0…………0……………0………..0

    • Stephen J says:

      DJ Moore WR Maryland

      ………..Punt Ret…..Yards…….Ave…..TD…..Kick Ret……Yards……Ave…….TD
      Career..15………….153………10.20…0…….15………….334……..22.27…..0

    • Russell says:

      Greg Stroman is worth looking into , experience !!

      • Stephen J says:

        Interesting that you pick Stroman he was one of the earlier ones I came across then I found CB Darius Phillips W Mich he has slightly more experience overall his is just the reverse of Stroman meaning more in Kick off returns instead of Punt Returns and Phillips has better averages plus I liked Phillips as a CB better. I have both in that 3rd tier with Phillips in the top part of tier 3 while I have Stroman in the back part of tier 3. 1st tier elite starter 2nd tier good solid starter 3rd tier reserve back up who fills in at times and could become starter meanwhile they offer ST’s traits while developing into a starter. What might give Stroman the advantage though is he goes undrafted he probably be a high priority undrafted free agent. I do think he gets drafted but I also thought that Jonathan Jones would get drafted but that was mainly to Jones height Stroman doesn’t have that issue but he doesn’t have Jones speed either which what I thought would get Jones drafted.

    • Stephen J says:

      Bernard Reedy WR Toledo
      ………………Punt Ret….Yards…..Ave…..TD…Kick Ret……Yards……Ave……TD
      Junior Year…19…………210…….11.05..1…..32…………..885……..27.66…3
      Career……….29………..297…….10.24..1…..76……………1800…..23.68…3

      A practice squader who the Pats have used in 2 games this year he had 4 returns for 32 yards. Currently a Free Agent

  28. John says:

    Although I’m a big fan of taking the best available talent, I don’t believe corner is as high of a priority for this team as people believe.

    Defensively, an off-ball LB, interior DL, EDGE/OLB are the biggest areas of need. I wouldn’t even mind a hybrid SAF/LB.

    Offensively, OL can always be an area where resources are devoted to. I would also say TE depth, and a developmental QB are needs.

    Listed some prospects I like with their first couple of picks (1st/early 2nd)..

    Off-ball LB: Rashaan Evans, Malik Jefferson, Oren Burks
    Interior DL: Trenton Thompson, Tim Settle
    EDGE: Marcus Davenport, Sam Hubbard, Jaylon Ferguson
    SAF/LB: Marcus Allen, Ronnie Harrison

    OL: Mason Cole, Billy Price, Brian O’Neill

    Other prospects I’d consider at this juncture: James Washington, Bryce Love, DJ Moore

    Let me know what you guys think..

    • Russell says:

      great list John! I Like DE Hubbard, not so much S- Harrison, or DT Settle,( Sophomore). Guys I may add to the list, DT Mariuce Hurts, S- Quin Blanding, OL Braden Smith, & LB Micah Kiser .
      who you like as a developmental QB ?????

    • steve earle says:

      I agree mostly with your lists and positions. I learned about Tim Settle just recently and recognized he has the size and physical make up but after Stephen J came up with some “highlights” I had not seen it looks as though he should have returned to school for at least one more year. Not the case though and so appears he will be a project for who ever drafts him and I wouldn’t hope it is us. I do still believe DT is a position of need after DE and OLB.

    • Stephen J says:

      John one thing everybody needs to know about me is that I Am PICKY that’s not to say there are players that I like and are good but just don’t fit what the Pats do and how that player is used. I may like a player that would excel on another team but wouldn’t on the Pats but the same goes the other way around there are players on other teams that would excel on the Pats but aren’t on their current team. So with that said when I say I don’t like such and such player it doesn’t mean I don’t think he is good just that the fit for the Pats may not be good.

      Your Off-ball LB’s Evans and Burks they maybe good players but they don’t fit due to their size BB has tried on several occasions and is currently trying with Elandon Roberts who is 6’0 230. Elandon Roberts is a great player and his college stats are ridiculous but he has a role where he does well but role is limited in this D and he was asked to do things that went beyond that and he didn’t perform well to put it politely. Evans and Burks would be the same so that’s why I wouldn’t consider them.
      Malik Jefferson now I do like him but don’t love him. He is flashy and athletic who has made plays that catches the eye but with him it’s about his athleticism and not technique. You can’t teach athleticism but you can technique. Since he really needs time to be taught and develop that technique I wouldn’t spend a 1st or early 2nd round pick on him.

      Interior DL: I already discussed Tim Settle a little bit pass.

      Now Trenton Thompson is a real possibility. Here is the issue I have with him. He is not a true DT but a large DE which is not a bad thing as I will explain in a bit. He is athletic and fast for his size how much will be determined at the combine. Unlike Malik Jefferson, Thompson has technique it’s just not fully developed. This is where I run into an issue of where do I place him. If he were to have stayed in he would of been a sure fire 1st round pick next year. Maybe not the top tier but a 1st rounder. I say that because he reminds me of Ty Warren who the Pats selected in the 1st round. Now Ty Warren at 6’5″ 300 lbs was a little more stout(chubby) in the midriff and not as muscular but rotated between a DT and a large DE like Thompson has. Ty Warren stayed at Texas A&M for 4 years where his technique was more refined then where Thompson is now. Thompson’s stats are following a very similar path and would of been just slightly better had he stayed in for another year. Thompson has high upside potential not elite upside potential. I don’t think he will be a day 1 starter at the beginning of next year but somewhere towards the second half of the season he could bypass Adam Butler then eventually(not next year) Lawrence Guy. I just have reservations on where to select him but I like him

      Now I love me some Marcus Davenport he has some mid level technique issues to work on and refine but he has that elite athletic ability and skill few have. I just don’t think he will be there when the Pats select in the 1st round.

      As far as Sam Hubbard, and Jaylon Ferguson I wouldn’t use either the 1st or early 2nd on either. I like Ferguson better but think Hubbard is the better player if that makes sense to you.

      As far as the safety/lb I’m not a fan of either one.

      The OL I’d pass on Cole and Price and depending on what happens with Nate Solder I’d look at Brian O’Neil just not sure which pick to use for him I could argue both ways.

      Washington and Love I’d pass on. With Love he’s a good RB and is an excellent ball protector who hasn’t fumbled in college but just seems too 1 dimensional. If BB/Ivan Fears thinks he can be a productive catcher and contribute as a Kick/Punt Returner which he has done but not much then it could be a possibility but as of right now I just don’t see the later two.

      DJ Moore good player but I wouldn’t use a 1st or early 2nd on.

      • John says:

        I think Belichick is going to have to change his tune when it comes to LB measurables, just because of sheer scarcity of LB’s that actually fit within his parameters. LB’s nowadays are smaller, and larger LB’s are not as versatile when it comes to coverage. They may be able to blitz, or edge rush, etc., but there are not many that can do what Hightower does. That’s why there depth is usually lacking.

        Think that’s what you saw with Roberts, and a few others. Van Noy fits his parameters but even he is still lacking when it comes to quality (to a degree).

        Marcus Allen and Ronnie Harrison are good hybrid backers. They can do a little bit of coverage when it comes to being “in the box” and are definitely legit threats in the run game. Neither are single-high SAF. There’s only really one good one, in this draft, and that’s basically Fitzpatrick. Even Derwin James is more of an LB.

        • Stephen J says:

          How many Super Bowls and Championships has he won doing it this way. No way is flawless and this way has worked well enough for him. Now with that said two things to consider here 1 Matt Patricia moving on with a new defensive coordinator there maybe a change. 2 Patrick Chung is due to be replaced bringing one of those type players to play his role but I’d think 225 lbs would be the biggest they’d go because then you start running into the opposite effect of these lighter LB’s trying to play that bigger LB role.

  29. Stephen J says:

    Thanks to Ethan Hammerman here are our Key Returners(Those that have done the bulk of the returns not those that have isolated/spot returns) since 2000

    KICK RETURNER

    2000 Curtis Jackson/JR Redmond

    2001 Kevin Faulk/David Patten

    2002 Deion Branch/Kevin Faulk

    2003 Bethel Johnson/Patrick Pass

    2004 Bethel Johnson/Patrick Pass

    2005 Bethel Johnson/Ellis Hobbs

    2006 Laurence Maroney/Kevin Faulk

    2007 Ellis Hobbs/Wes Welker

    2008 Ellis Hobbs/Matt Slater

    2009 Laurence Maroney/Matt Slater/Julian Edelman

    2010 Brandon Tate

    2011 Danny Woodhead/Julian Edelman

    2012 Devin McCourty

    2013 LeGarrette Blount/Josh Boyce

    2014 Danny Amendola/Pat Chung

    2015 Keshawn Martin/Danny Amendola

    2016 Cyrus Jones/Danny Amendola

    2017 Dion Lewis

    PUNT RETURNER

    2000 Troy Brown

    2001 Troy Brown

    2002 Troy Brown

    2003 Troy Brown

    2004 Kevin Faulk

    2005 Tim Dwight

    2006 Kevin Faulk

    2007 Wes Welker

    2008 Wes Welker

    2009 Wes Welker

    2010 Julian Edelman

    2011 Julian Edelman

    2012 Wes Welker/Julian Edelman

    2013 Julian Edelman

    2014 Julian Edelman/Danny Amendola

    2015 Danny Amendola

    2016 Danny Amendola

    2017 Danny Amendola

    This is an area that definitely needs attention Danny Amendola at the age of 32 is a UFA after this season and he has been the most used returner since 2014. Mean while our other current returner in Dion Lewis contract ends this year as well. If both were to leave that would put Julian Edelman and Cyrus Jones as the returners.

    • steve earle says:

      I can’t believe we will let Lewis walk he has become so important to our offense but who can tell. As for C.Jones I have no faith in him at all and Edelman is just to valuable to risk on return duty. WE must either find a lower mid rd draft returner or a FA because we have to many needs that should be addressed early to go after that position then.

      • Stephen J says:

        This year is the 1st year Dion Lewis has remained healthy for the full year. The way he has played this year some team may be willing to throw money at him. So yes it’s a real possibility. BB will set an amount and if it is surpassed then Good Bye Dion.

      • Stephen J says:

        BB considers Returner’s the QB on Special Teams (just look and see how many of them have been starters/rotational starters and a lower mid rd draft returner is not that) and one of the highest priorities so don’t be surprised and this year it looks like we could possibly need 2.

  30. Russell says:

    I have the Patriots over the titans 31- 19. James Harrison two sacks & a pick!!! Harrison is the wild card the Titans can not prepare for, with no tape on how is used in the Patriots Scheme .

    Stephen J. thoughts on punt returners got me thinking. C. Jones was clearly a disappointment in this area, BUT was a large part of why he was drafted. Edleman is to valuable, and Amendola to injury prone to keep doing punt returns.
    Would BB draft early, (1st-2d) Slot guy/ punt returner like Christian Kirk, with the idea of replacing Amendola??

    • Stephen J says:

      Russell

      Let’s break this down with a Pats point of view. Now as you look at the Pats history yes BB has used slot guys as returners but the highest he has ever drafted one is in the 4th round and that being Josh Boyce in 2013 from TCU. Another slot receiver who was a returner but wasn’t drafted was Wes Welker who BB traded a 2nd round pick for but he was a proven NFL returner for the Dolphins at that point and not a rookie. The other slot guys who have been used as Returners have been late 7th rounders or undrafted mainly. So while BB could always do something new it hasn’t been his Modus Operandi. The highest returners drafted have been DB’s who have return skills outside of maybe RB Laurence Maroney who was drafted in the 1st round and had 26 kick returns in his 1st year but then did it in a spot roll.

      • Stephen J says:

        Well I came across someone that was drafted higher than Josh Boyce and that was Brandon Tate in the third(83) and while with the Pats in his second year he had 41 Kick Returns with 1 Punt Return but when he left he has done both full time but hasn’t really caught on as a wr. His biggest year receiving was with the Pats where he had 24 receptions for 432 yards and 3 TD’s

      • Russell says:

        I agree Stephen, that CB’s tend to do more returns. With Edelman, & Amendola each going into their 10th year, a slot guy maybe in the cards, now, so one with returning abilities would allow him to play/to make roster, while sitting mostly behind Edelman.
        Their maybe other slot guys , Kirk just came to mind.
        BB has a poor history drafting CB, (McCourty is a better S) & Recievers . With Brady’s window closing BB may draft differently looking for playmakers, OR look at free agents/ trade possibilities .(like Cook, Burkhead, etc.)

        • Stephen J says:

          I wasn’t implying not to draft a slot WR who returns punts/kicks I was looking at where BB drafts slot wr who return kicks/punts. Then looked at where BB drafts DB’s who return kicks/punts and stating from his track record he values DB’s with return experience more than slot wr with return experience. RB’s are even harder the 3 main ones used were Kevin Faulk Laurence Maroney and LeGarrette Blount. Kevin Faulk was already here when BB arrived Laurence Maroney really only did 1 full time season of returns as did Blount and both were replaced as full time returners the next season but provided fill in rolls here and there. So you have 2 RB’s one a 1st rounder the other brought in with a trade for another player and a 7th round pick. Both ends of the spectrum for 1 season’s worth of full time return production(referring to Blount and Maroney)

    • steve earle says:

      Your return candidates could be good guesses another might be Ito Smith RB. He’s smaller then Edelman but has some wicked sudden moves like Edelman and Lewis and Lewis is to valuable now too.

  31. Stephen J says:

    Isaiah Oliver was like the 2nd CB I looked at to start the draft process this year. He is one of the one’s I liked early on and wouldn’t be disappointed if he landed with the Pats. Since looking at him and Iowa CB Josh Jackson I stumbled across something that led me in another direction.Well what better time to bring this up than on a CB Scouting Report page.

    I’ve been looking at/for KR/Punt returners and while doing so, this dawned on me. BB has brought in undrafted CB’s to compete the last few years and it seems to have worked well. With that said he still drafted 1 CB Cyrus Jones. Now could it be that if BB where to draft another CB it would be one who could play CB and Return kicks. IF so are there any in this draft. Well I’ve come across 3 that fit that description and seem real promising. One other thing I should mention is I looked at these prospects with 1 the possibility of losing Butler and 2 Someone to compete and beat out Cyrus Jones.

    1 DJ Reed Kansas St

    Here is a nice breakdown of him here

    https://247sports.com/college/kansas-state/Article/PFF-breaks-down-the-choices-of-NFL-Draft-hopefuls-Byron-Pringle-DJ-Reed-113071979

    One thing that this article mentions but doesn’t cover though is return skills. DJ Reed is not only a good CB in this draft, but he is one of the best return men in the country.

    34.2 yards per KR (2nd)
    14.9 yards per PR (2nd)
    Stats from NCAA.com/stats

    Cyrus Jones Career College

    23.4 yards per KR
    12.46 yards per PR
    Stats from CFBStats.com

    One of the possible draw backs is that he is 5’9″ while that alone is not disqualifying Kenny Moore who impressed this past Training Camp and was picked up by the Colts was 5’9″ I am curious to see what his testing numbers are to see how athletic he really is. I will be looking to see his 3 Cone Vert 40 times and to a lesser extent his broad jump.

  32. Stephen J says:

    Just throwing this out there it is almost time that the Pats sign reserve future contracts one possibility is Dalton Crossan. The RB from UNH he was brought into Colts camp as a undrafted free agent then put on IR then released and is now a Free Agent. Not sure if he would be considered for a futures contract or just brought in at a later date if interested.

  33. Stephen J says:

    The College Gridiron Showcase happened this week in Dallas Tx from the 6th-10th and Markus Davenports teammate CB Devron Davis drew a lot of attention the Pats met with him on the 9th

    https://twitter.com/thorku/status/950866062450610177

  34. Russell says:

    Interesting sounding CB. I have my doubts BB would draft a junior at that position, but you never know.
    Steve earl; Virginia tech DT entered the draft; Tim Settle 6’2′ 335 lbs. , doubt BB would as just a sophomore, but size is nice.

    • steve earle says:

      Thanks Russell I’ll try to look him up but I’m having trouble with my PC locating many sites I use to follow prospects. As it is if I find the Draft Scout site it’s by sheer accident or finding other prospect ranking sites the same. Just don’t know why but Windows upgraded this thing and it’s not the same as before.

      • steve earle says:

        Well accidents will happen apparently. Even found some highlights and liked what I saw. Even with only one year this kid looks good and is projected as a 3rd-4th rd pick probably because of that. I could see Bill using a 3rd for him as he looks like he has a high upside and given his ability to get inside pressure on QB’s.

        • Stephen J says:

          Here is a string of plays supposedly highlighting the good but demonstrates pretty much what I’ve seen in other video of Tim Settle

          https://twitter.com/JaredStanger/status/951353842959970304

          1st clip The Guard lets him by to get to the 2nd level and as he gets into the backfield unabated he totally whiffs

          2nd video talks about his rip move being ferocious with the caveat if he can harness it yet totally ignores him being pancaked. Also notice his Pad Level the reason why he got himself into the spot of being pancaked is his Pad Level being too high initially. This happens consistently in the videos I’ve seen of him because he springs up from lack of hip bend and when he does he gets to upright.

          3rd video Terrell Edmunds 22 brother of Tremaine makes this play pretty much he gift wraps it for Tim. But to his credit he finishes it off.

          4th video Talks about his rip move again but nearly falls flat on his face after completing it. Some of the out of control he talks about in the 1st video

          Now this is against college level players. He is a developmental player from these 4 clips not worthy of a 3rd round pick. Now mind you these are only 4 clips but because of watching so much video of Tremaine Edmunds you get to see plenty of Tim Settle as well and these 4 clips highlight pretty well what I saw of Tim there as well. Not saying with time he could put it all together and be a decent player but Dominant I just don’t see it.

          I’d take Vincent Valentine over this and it’s not close.

        • Russell says:

          I agree with Stephen J on settle, just not enough experience. I like some of his tape, But just unexperienced .

        • Stephen J says:

          Here is a video of Tim Settle training but it describes what I am talking about in his springing up. When he springs up he is left standing nearly straight up.

          https://twitter.com/adross77/status/951575778600374272

  35. steve earle says:

    Like this report Mike. AS my PC is still not working the way it was before I was “upgraded” I still can access many sites such as Draft Scout so wonder do you have a projected draft round he might go at?

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