With the Patriots losing their 8th game of the season last Sunday in Germany, the tone of the season, at least from fans, quickly turned to scoreboard, college football, and NFL Draft Tankathon watching as their team enters a much-needed bye-week.
If the season ended today, New England would hold the No. 3 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. But who is set to go No. 1? Here are the odds, according to FanDuel Sportsbook:
2024 NFL Draft – No. 1 Overall Pick
QB Caleb Williams -320
QB Drake Maye +250
WR Marvin Harrison Jr. +2000
QB J.J. McCarthy +3000
OT Olomuyiwa Fashanu +3000
While Williams is the odds-on favorite to go first, many believe that North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye is right on his heels to take over the top spot. In fact, just last week (when the Pats held the No. 4 pick), Bleacher Report’s Brent Sobleski mocked the USC talent to Foxborough. Here’s what he wrote:
“4. New England Patriots: QB Caleb Williams, USC
The New England Patriots spent the last four seasons without Tom Brady completely rudderless.
The mystique of the previous dynasty is long gone. The lack of talent found on the roster is startling. The coaching staff’s overall ineptitude has been clearly on display. The Patriots are now an afterthought. Questions about Bill Belichick’s status with the organization have even arisen.
The NFL has always been a “what have you done lately” league. Well, the Patriots are 27-32 since the start of the 2020 campaign, including a 2-7 start to this season. Something drastic needs to be done. The solution just may fall into their lap if they hold a top-five selection.
To reiterate B/R’s earlier stance on Williams and where he currently sits in the evaluation process:
‘He’s still an awesome player, of course,” Klassen said previously. “His arm talent and elasticity are rare. He’s also got a killer instinct outside the pocket that many of the league’s best quarterbacks do.
With that said, Williams comes with some clear risks. The 6’1″, 215-pound prospect is on the smaller end of the scale and he isn’t a consistent down-to-down operator right now.’
Maybe the Heisman Trophy winner isn’t perfect, but he’s definitely a massive upgrade over Mac Jones.”
While it’s hard to believe that Williams, a consensus generational talent, could drop that far in April’s draft, the Trojans losing four out of their last five games hasn’t helped his cause. The QB is still, however, second in the nation in touchdown passes (29) and second in passing yards (3,249), and continues to show off his transcendent skillset week in and week out.
While I still wouldn’t hold your breath on the signal caller landing in Foxborough, the Patriots having the No. 3 pick guarantees that they land one of Williams, Maye, or wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. That in itself is something to be excited about.