New England Patriots 2019 mock draft: Picks, big board, team needs, seven rounds, multiple options for every selection

The champs are poised to get even richer. Coming off yet another Super Bowl win, the New England Patriots currently own 12 picks in the 2019 NFL Draft, including six by the end of Round 3 -- which should help after Rob Gronkowski retired and key players like Trent Brown and Trey Flowers left in free agency. If the perfect prospect is available, they'll even have the leeway to package picks together to move up. If you're not scared yet, fans of the other 31 teams, you should be.

You can check out which picks the Patriots currently have below, as well as our projection of their top positional needs. I'll then build a war-room big board based upon players I think have some kind of chance of making it to their first pick before sharing multiple draft classes that make sense for the team from myself, Ryan Wilson and Chris Trapasso.

As for the actual draft, you'll be able to stream our live coverage right here on CBS Sports HQ (or download the CBS Sports app for free on any mobile or connected TV device) breaking down all the picks and everything you need to know during draft weekend.  

Current draft picks

1 32
2 56 from Chicago
2 64
3 73 from Detroit
3 97 Compensatory
3 101 Compensatory
4 134
6 205 Compensatory
7 239 from Philadelphia
7 243 from Kansas City through San Francisco, Cleveland
7 246
7 252 Compensatory

Team needs

The CBS Sports NFL writing staff recently compiled positional rankings to identify needs for each team heading into the draft. A helpful guide: any position group that had an average ranking worse than 16.0 (on a scale of 1 to 32) was considered a "need," while any that ranked worse than 23.0 (bottom-third of the league) was considered a "pressing need."

4.0 5.0 24.0 2.0 19.0 25.6 11.5 6.5

Pressing: WR/TE, INT DL

The defending champs are still in pretty good shape with elite quarterback play, one of the best running back combinations in the league, the best offensive line coach in NFL history, and a terrific secondary. It seems strange calling wide receiver/tight end a glaring need given that they just won a Super Bowl with half-strength Gronk, Julian Edelman, and that's it, but Gronk is gone now and they need a talent infusion there. They probably can't get T.J. Hockenson, but Noah Fant or one of the tight ends in the second or third-round range would make a lot of sense. They scooped up Michael Bennett after figuring out they were almost definitely losing Trey Flowers, and they don't care about the edge as much as other teams anyway, but they have to find this year's version of Danny Shelton and Malcom Brown to solidify the middle of the defense.  

War room big board

Will the Patriots make a move up from No. 32? Will they trade back again for even more picks, perhaps in the 2020 draft? Here's how I'd project the Cardinals' draft board for their first pick, considering only players I feel have some chance of making it in range:

  1. TE Noah Fant, Iowa (trade up)
  2. DT Jeffery Simmons, Mississippi State
  3. DT Christian Wilkins, Clemson
  4. WR A.J. Brown, Ole Miss
  5. WR N'Keal Harry, Arizona State
  6. WR Marquise Brown, Oklahoma
  7. DT Jerry Tillery, Notre Dame
  8. DT Dexter Lawrence, Clemson
  9. WR Deebo Samuel, South Carolina
  10. S Johnathan Abram, Mississippi State
  11. OL Kaleb McGary, Washington
  12. QB Daniel Jones, Duke

Seven-round mock drafts

R.J. White:

1 32 WR A.J. Brown, Ole Miss
2 56 TE Irv Smith Jr., Alabama from CHI
2 64 CB Joejuan Williams, Vanderbilt
3 73 WR Andy Isabella, UMass from DET
3 97 to Tampa Bay
3 101 DT Kingsley Keke, Texas A&M
4 107 ILB Blake Cashman, Minnesota from TB*
4 134 to San Francisco
5 147 S Sheldrick Redwine, Miami from TB/BUF*
6 191 RB Trayveon Williams, Texas A&M from BAL*
6 205 to Baltimore
7 239 QB Gardner Minshew II, Washington State from PHI
7 243 LB Jamal Davis II, Akron from KC
7 246 to Baltimore
7 252 to San Francisco

DE Arik Armstead (from San Francisco)

This draft should be about adding weapons to the passing game after losing Rob Gronkowski and multiple receivers this offseason, and that starts at No. 32 with A.J. Brown, a great route-runner with excellent size who can share the load with Julian Edelman as a primary passing option with Gronkowski out the door. Before Day 2 kicks off, the Patriots work out another deal with their trade buddies in San Francisco to land Arik Armstead for fourth- and seventh-round picks after the 49ers land Nick Bosa at No. 2. Considering all the picks New England has, it's a fine price to pay for a talented young player on his fifth-year option. 

Once Day 2 starts, the Patriots scoop up a receiving tight end in Smith who didn't test well but can work the seam and stretch the field, and Tom Brady will know how to get the most out of him. After adding a big, proven corner at the end of the second round, the Patriots snag another receiving weapon in Round 3 with Isabella, who ran a 4.31 40 and knows how to get open. With Edelman, Brown, Isabella and Smith, the Patriots won't be lacking for options in the passing game. After trading out of Day 2 with their second pick of Round 3, the team snags a versatile defensive lineman whose best fit should be as a penetrator on the interior. 

The first pick they landed after trading down with the Bucs nets the Patriots a linebacker prospect who had an outstanding combine and can contribute immediately on special teams while eventually emerging with a role on the defense. The second pick from that trade is used on a versatile safety who should be able to take over as a starter down the road. The Pats then make a small move up in the sixth to land Williams, who shined as an all-around back at Texas A&M and would be a steal this late in a class saturated with Round 3-6 caliber running backs. The Patriots then spend their remaining picks on a developmental quarterback and a potential special-teams ace who might not have a clear position on defense.

More seven-round mocks:
(*) indicates pick acquired via trade

Round 1 WR A.J. Brown, Ole Miss
DE Jachai Polite, Florida
Round 2 TE Jace Sternberger, Texas A&M
DE Zach Allen, Boston College 
WR Andy Isabella, UMass
Trade for QB Josh Rosen*
Round 3 LB Blake Cashman, Minnesota
DT Khalen Saunders, Western Illinois
QB Ryan Finley, NC State  
TE Jace Sternberger, Texas A&M
DL John Cominsky, Charleston
CB Iman Marshall, USC
Round 4 DL Kingsley Keke, Texas A&M 
LB Cameron Smith, USC
Round 5

Round 6 CB Saivion Smith, Alabama 
FB Alec Ingold, Wisconsin
Round 7 TE Tommy Sweeney, Boston College
WR Greg Dortch, Wake Forest
RB Mike Weber, Ohio State 
QB Trace McSorley, Penn State 
CB Blessuan Austin, Rutgers
LB T.J. Edwards, Wisconsin
DB Zedrick Woods, Ole Miss
WR Ryan Davis, Auburn

Check out more first-round mocks from CBS Sports.

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