2023 NFL Draft: Best players available for Patriots in Rounds 2 and 3

Perry: Here’s who the Patriots should target on NFL Draft Day 2 originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The Patriots found a way to fill what was arguably their greatest need, at a premium position, with a blue-chip talent. And they were able to trade back and add a fourth-round pick in the process. Talk about a dream scenario for Bill Belichick.

Oregon’s Christian Gonzalez gives them size in a corner room desperately in need of some and speed (4.38-second 40) to run with the likes of Stefon Diggs, Garrett Wilson and Tyreek Hill in the AFC East. He can play man and zone. He has arguably the smoothest movement skills of any player at the position in this class.

Patriots Talk: Picking Christian Gonzalez 17th overall in the 2023 NFL Draft is DREAM SCENARIO for Patriots  | Listen & Subscribe | Watch on YouTube

Is he the feistiest player at the position entering the league? Nope. That was Devon Witherspoon, who the Patriots loved but went off with the No. 5 overall pick — likely out of range of a trade up for Belichick. But Gonzalez is a willing tackler. And what he offers from a height-weight-speed perspective is so rare that getting him in the teens, yes, qualifies as a steal.

Now time to get to work on the rest of the roster. Where should they be focused on Day 2?

They could use help at wide receiver, particularly on the outside, to try to make themselves more dynamic. They could use a tackle to buttress a group that features Trent Brown, Riley Reiff and Calvin Anderson at the top of the depth chart.

A tight end — with both Hunter Henry and Mike Gesicki entering contract years — would make sense. As would a third-down back who could function as Mac Jones‘ security blanket.

Let’s get to our best available for the Patriots on Day 2, providing links to our Prototypical Patriots series along the way so you can find out more about each of the names mentioned here…



  • Dawand Jones, Ohio State

  • Cody Mauch, North Dakota State

  • Matthew Bergeron, Syracuse

  • Tyler Steen, Alabama

  • Jon Gaines, UCLA

  • Nick Saldiveri, Old Dominion


  • Darnell Washington, Georgia

  • Michael Mayer, Notre Dame

  • Luke Musgrave, Oregon State

  • Sam LaPorta, Iowa

  • Tucker Kraft, South Dakota

  • Luke Schoonmaker, Michigan

  • Zach Charbonnet, UCLA

  • Roschon Johnson, Texas

  • Tyjae Spears, Tulane

  • Eric Gray, Oklahoma



  • Quan Martin, Illinois

  • Brian Branch, Alabama

  • Daniel Scott, Cal

  • Drew Sanders, Arkansas

  • Trent Simpson, Clemson

  • Noah Sewell, Oregon


  • Joey Porter Jr., Penn State

  • Julius Brents, Kansas State

  • Darius Rush, South Carolina

  • Cam Smith, South Carolina

  • Cory Trice, Purdue

  • Riley Moss, Iowa

  • DJ Turner, Michigan

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