Wednesday, May 17, 2023

New England Patriots Post-Draft 2023 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a post-draft roundup for the New England Patriots in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 16

Most improved: Offensive coaching

Bill Belichick's plan to install a new offense in 2022, and to do so with longtime defensive-based coach Matt Patricia as a leading presence, didn't produce the desired results (e.g. last in the NFL in the red zone; 27th in third-down efficiency; 28th in total first downs; dipping from 48 TDs scored the prior season to 31). So handing the reins to Bill O'Brien, who pairs with new OL coach Adrian Klemm, should be a decisive step in the right direction. -- Rank: 17

Nobody puts Bill Belichick in a corner. Conventional wisdom says to wait until the end of the draft -- or the free agency period that immediately follows -- to fill out your roster with guys who kick the ball for a living. Instead, the Patriots coach used a fourth-round pick on Maryland kicker Chad Ryland before spending a sixth-rounder on Michigan State punter Bryce Baringer. Take that, conventional wisdom! Belichick also told reporters he "absolutely" feels the same way about Mac Jones as he did at this time last year, when the former first-round pick was coming off a Pro Bowl season as a rookie. The potentially chilly relationship between coach and QB remains a subplot to watch on Patriot Way.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 27

The Mac Jones situation bears watching. Do they like him or not? One thing's for sure, coordinator Bill O'Brien will be better for this offense than the mess from last year.

USA Today -- Rank: 21

When was the last time they had the worst quarterback situation in the AFC East? Maybe 1992? When was the last time they had the worst receiver situation in the AFC East? Definitely 2022.

The Athletic -- Rank: 19

Draft takeaway: Landing Gonzalez at No. 17 could be the steal of the draft, but man, it's hard to really love a draft that includes a kicker and punter — even if there are 12 picks in total. The biggest news is Mac Jones is still here.

Hype man: Everyone hated the Cole Strange pick last year and he turned out fine. Get back to us when you've won half as many rings as Bill Belichick. And with Bill O'Brien replacing Matt Patricia, we're cooking with even better gas.

DeVante Downer: You read the thing about Mac Jones still being the quarterback, right?

PFF -- Rank: 20

The loss of wide receiver Jakobi Meyers was offset by the Patriots signing wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and drafting Kayshon Boutte. Boutte boasts the potential to blossom after falling very far from his pre-2022 projections. The talent was evident on film in 2021, and if the Patriots can get him back on track, he could end up one of the steals of the draft.

To protect Mac Jones, New England drafted Jake Andrews and Sidy Sow. Sow offers inside-outside flexibility and will be a mauler in New England's gap-heavy rushing scheme.

PFT -- Rank: 20

Other than new OC Bill O'Brien, it's hard to get excited about a team that finished losing five of the last seven, with the D/special teams allowing 29.7 points per game in the last seven weeks. And then defensive leader Devin McCourty retired.

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