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North Carolina wide receiver Devontez Walker (9) runs for a touchdown following a reception during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Miami, Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023, in Chapel Hill, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Seward)
North Carolina wide receiver Devontez Walker (9) runs for a touchdown following a reception during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Miami, Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023, in Chapel Hill, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Seward)

The Patriots have nearly completed the 2024 pro day circuit, so scouts and executives can return home with most of the information needed for the upcoming NFL draft.

Prospects will still be hosted on Top 30 visits at Gillette Stadium. But with the information currently at our disposal, here’s how we see the draft shaking out for the Patriots.

Round 1, Pick No. 3: UNC QB Drake Maye

The Patriots were out in full force at UNC’s pro day last week, where Maye was the main attraction.

Unless they decide to move up, which would be unexpected, the Patriots are not in full control of who they can take at No. 3 overall. And until the top quarterbacks visit Gillette Stadium, which head coach Jerod Mayo said he expects, they might not even be decided on who they want to select with their first-round pick.

NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero reported last week that there was buzz around the NFL Annual Meeting that the Commanders could take J.J. McCarthy at No. 2 overall. Some people within the organization would welcome that.

LSU head coach Brian Kelly then said last week at his team’s pro day that QB Jayden Daniels is “gonna get the ball out to his playmakers and make plays for Washington.”

Let’s assume the Commanders pick McCarthy or Daniels. Either way, that leaves Maye for the Patriots.

Maye has prototypical size at 6-foot-4, 223 pounds. Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo raved about Maye at the owners meetings last week.

“Drake Maye had a fantastic interview at the combine. He brings a lot of energy,” Mayo said. “You can tell he has that leadership ability. And also the exciting part about a guy like Drake Maye is the ceiling. Like, there is really no ceiling with a guy like that. Now, in saying that, when we’re trying to put together this roster, I know a lot of people look at the ceiling, but you also got to kind of see how low is the floor? And I would say that a guy like Drake Maye, he has a lot of room to grow. He’s a young guy. Honestly, he hasn’t played football nearly as much as these other guys. So that’s definitely something that we’ve looked at, but he definitely is going to develop.”

He was less expansive about Daniels, which might have been strategic.

Maye is believed to be a developmental prospect. Unless the Patriots can find a starting caliber left tackle and “X” receiver, then it might be best for him to sit for a year behind Jacoby Brissett anyway.

Round 2, Pick No. 34: Arizona OT Jordan Morgan

We skip the wide receiver for now and grab someone who can protect Maye’s blindside in the future.

The Patriots currently have Mike Onwenu for the right side but no obvious player to align at left tackle. The current best option would probably be free-agent pickup Chukwuma Okorafor, but he was primarily a right tackle with the Steelers.

Morgan is 6-foot-5, 311 pounds and ran a 5.07-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine. He started 37 games at right tackle for Arizona.

He let up just two sacks in 2023 and three over the last two seasons. He played under head coach Jedd Fisch, who the Patriots know well from his time with the team in 2020, at Arizona.

Round 3, Pick No. 68: UNC WR Devontez Walker

Walker, who’s 6-foot-2, 193 pounds and ran a 4.36-second 40-yard dash at the combine, would come in with a connection to Maye.

He was a deep threat with the Tar Heels, catching 10 deep passes for 375 yards with four touchdowns in just eight games. The Patriots pretty desperately need big wide receivers with speed.

Round 3, Pick 99 (Trade): UCF WR Javon Baker

Let’s package the 102nd overall pick in the third round with the 184th overall pick in the sixth round to move up to take Baker in the third. An Alabama transfer, Baker finished out his college career with a 52-catch, 1,139-yard, seven-touchdown campaign as a senior.

The 6-foot-1, 202-pound pass-catcher doesn’t come with Walker’s pure speed (he ran a 4.54-second 40-yard dash) but was even more productive on deep balls, catching 15 passes of 20-plus yards for 574 yards with four touchdowns.

Let Walker and Baker battle it out in training camp to see if either one can carve out a starting role in a wide receiver group that already includes Kendrick Bourne, DeMario Douglas and K.J. Osborn, all of whom are better suited to play in the slot or “Z” receiver roles.

Round 5, Pick 137: Florida State CB Jarrian Jones

The 6-foot, 190-pound cornerback has experience outside and in the slot. The Patriots could work with his 4.38-second 40-yard-dash speed.

Round 6, Pick 193: Ohio State S Josh Proctor

The Patriots need more depth at safety with Kyle Dugger’s status still slightly uncertain after receiving the transition tag. The 6-foot-2, 209-pound Proctor has experience at free safety, where the Patriots are lacking.

Round 7, Pick 234: Washington TE Devin Culp

Patriots wide receivers coach Tyler Hughes worked with the offense as a graduate assistant at Washington last season. Culp is worthy of a flier at 6-foot-3, 231 pounds. He was timed at 4.47-second in the 40-yard dash at the combine.