10 wide receivers the Patriots could target in 2022 NFL Draft


The wide receivers still available in free agency aren’t inspiring. Should the Patriots look for one in the draft?

Ohio State wide receiver Chris Olave runs a drill during the NFL football scouting combine. Olave could be a first round pick. AP Photo/Darron Cummings

If the Patriots want to add a prime option at wide receiver this offseason, they don’t have many choices outside of the draft or a blockbuster trade (and one blockbuster trade option went off the board on Thursday evening).

The available wide receivers aren’t exactly inspiring at this stage in free agency, and the Patriots might need some upgrades. Could they take a swing at a high-profile name in the draft? After all, Bill Belichick was spotted after taking in an impressive wide receiver workout at the draft combine earlier this month.

If Belichick liked what he saw, there are plenty of options available. Here are 10 of them.

First Round – No. 21

Drake London – USC

London was considered perhaps the best wide receiver prospect in the class after an impressive season at USC. He is projected to be off the board too early for the Patriots, but if Belichick trades up, perhaps London could be a target — especially if his broken ankle scares a few teams away early in the first round.

Jameson Williams – Alabama

Fans might be a little skittish of Williams, who tore his ACL in the National Championship Game and probably won’t be ready for the start of the season.

Still, Bleacher Report described Williams’ acceleration as “game-breaking” and he might be the best deep threat in the draft, which could be an interesting weapon for Mac Jones as his responsibilities increase next year. If Williams slips to 21 — and if the Patriots are willing to be a little patient — Williams might be worth a close look.

Chris Olave – Ohio State

Olave is projected to go lower than London and Williams, but NFL.com’s draft analyst Chad Reuter wrote that Olave “planted his flag as one of the top two receivers in the draft” with an impressive workout at the combine (which, again, Belichick might have caught in person). Olave is considered an inferior prospect to his Ohio State teammate Garrett Williams, but he could be available to the Patriots without trading up. He is considered one of the best route runners in the class.

Treylon Burks – Arkansas

If Olave and Williams are off the board (and the Patriots aren’t willing to move up), Burks is another high-potential option. While he isn’t considered as explosive as some of his first-round counterparts, Burks has great hands and positional versatility.

Skyy Moore – Western Michigan

A final first-round option, Moore was another riser at the combine due to his ability to make difficult catches, crisp short routes and explosive speed.

“He caught the ball cleanly and brought to mind memories of MLB great Willie Mays when grabbing passes over his head,” Chad Reuter wrote on NFL.com.

Moore is mocked near the first round by some analysts, but others project he could be available when the Patriots pick in the second round.

Second Round – No. 54

Christian Watson – North Dakota

Watson is an excellent athlete with great speed and a fantastic vertical. He performed well at the combine and racked up 800 yards in his final season with the Bison.

Jahan Dotson – Penn State

Dotson can do a little bit of everything and might be a much higher selection if he wasn’t 5-foot-10. Still, the Patriots have had a lot of success with shorter receivers. Could Dotson be in the play in the second round?

George Pickens – Georgia

Pickens is considered an elite catcher with impressive ball skills and the ability to adjust mid-air. Can he add muscle in time to improve his draft stock?

Jalen Tolbert – South Alabama

Tolbert got high marks for his smooth athleticism and route-running, but scouts would like to see him play with a little more fire.

Calvin Austin III – Memphis

Austin’s athleticism popped at the combine despite his lack of size. He ran track at Memphis in addition to playing wide receiver.

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