BOSTON (CBS) – Each week night leading up the 2015 NFL Draft, 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Adam Jones and Rich Keefe break down the biggest needs of the New England Patriots.
On Monday night, the guys focused on guard prospects. After trading six-time Pro Bowl left guard Logan Mankins at the beginning of last year, the Patriots were able to win a Super Bowl without him. But with the uncertainty of Dan Connolly and Ryan Wendell returning, New England’s offensive line certainly could use some attention.READ MORE: Melrose Seeks To 'Deemphasize' Halloween In Classrooms, Hold 'Inclusive' Fall Events
Protecting quarterback Tom Brady is always a top priority if the Patriots want to be successful on offense. Drafting a guard appears to be on the to-do list on draft night, but the round in which the Patriots address this need remains in question.
Jones and Keefe look at all the prospects and break them down into three groups:
Group 1: Off The Board – These players are the best of the best, prospects who the Patriots have no chance at picking 32nd overall.
Group 2: The Targets – These are prospects who could be available to the Patriots.
Group 3: The Pick Is In – Jones and Keefe each reveal who they want to see the Patriots pick.
Off The Board
LT Brandon Scherff- Iowa
Jones: I think Brandon Scherff is going to translate as a guard at the NFL. I think the more you read about him, he could be special there.
Keefe: He looks like probably a top ten pick, and head and shoulders the first offensive lineman taken. You hear a lot of Zach Martin comparisons so that makes some sense. So maybe he could play tackle but end up being a Pro Bowl guard.
C Cameron Erving – Florida State
Jones: He’s played tackle. He’s played center. He could translate to guard. A bit of a Swiss Army knife on the offensive line. If he’s there at 32, Keefe, I think he’d be an ideal fit. I’m just not sure he’s going to be there.
Keefe: I don’t think he will either. I think a team is going to grab him and fill whatever spot like you said. This guy also started at Florida State as a defensive lineman his first year and was pretty productive.
READ MORE: Young Crowd Eager To Attend Harry Styles Concert In Boston, But Are There COVID Concerns?
G Tre’ Jackson – Florida State
Jones: Probably more effective in the running game than the passing game. Another guy with a lot of experience and a lot of experience in the ACC at a high level.
Keefe: Just huge. 6-foot-4, 330 [pounds] and that’s before getting into an NFL weight and conditioning program and all that stuff. He’s obviously played at the highest level, played with some good guys, definitely pushes guys around. He was an All-American guard last year.
RG Laken Tomlinson – Duke
Jones: You see a lot of buzz with him, maybe not at 32, but certainly in the second round. A pure guard. No question about his flexibility. Very advanced in the pass blocking game. Maybe not as proficient in the run blocking game.
Keefe: This is one of those guys that played guard his entire career. Fifty two games started, so you know once he got there as a freshman he was playing. Also a team captain which we know in some drafts the Patriots have only taken team captains.
G A.J. Cann – South Carolina
Jones: A guy who’s probably more of a mauler in the run game than he is in the passing game but a lot of big game experience and again, a pure guard. This is not a guy who might play tackle, might play center. Nope, he’s going to plug in at guard for you.
Keefe: I’ve heard comparisons to Ben Grubbs, which would be pretty high praise. That guy still is one of the best guards in the NFL and did it for a long time. He was a second-team All-American. Solid at everything.
LT Ali Marpet – Hobart
Keefe: The guy’s stock could not be getting any higher. This guy dominates Division Three but gets invited to the Senior Bowl. All the NFL scouts saw him at the Senior Bowl because you see the Hobart helmet right next to the LSU helmet right next to a Florida State helmet, and you’re saying how come he isn’t getting pushed around? Then he gets invited to the Combine and he’s the fastest offensive lineman, and he’s one of the strongest.
The Pick Is In
To find out who Adam Jones and Rich Keefe desire most out of all the guard prospects, listen below!
Later in the show, Adam spoke to NFL Draft analyst Dane Brugler of CBS Sports about who the Patriots should target. They also discuss how the draft will play out for the other teams.MORE NEWS: Concord-Carlisle High School Teacher Accused Of Using Racist Slur Put On Leave