Is Drake Maye the answer for New England?

The New England Patriots are off to their worst start since 1993 as they continue to struggle in the post-Tom Brady era. The dreadful start has the Patriots in line to pick in the top five for the first time under Bill Belichick. After a year of horrendous quarterback play from Mac Jones and Bailey Zappe, it looks like the Patriots will hit the restart button and draft a new franchise quarterback. Luckily for New England, this draft has a few names worth watching as the draft class is headlined by Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, Jayden Daniels, Bo Nix, JJ McCarthy, and Michael Penix Jr.

Through 13 weeks, the Patriots have the worst record in the AFC and the second worst in the NFL, as they sit at 2-9, trailing the Carolina Panthers at 1-10. If the season ended today, the Patriots would have the second overall pick, and Carolina’s first overall pick belongs to the Chicago Bears. As it currently stands in Chicago, they are also in the market for a new quarterback, as Justin Fields has not been the answer for them. With Caleb Williams seen as the clear-cut first-overall pick, the Patriots are in line to draft Drake Maye, who is seen as the second-best quarterback in this year’s draft.

Per Dane Brugler of the The Athletic:

“In his 24 years as head coach in New England, Bill Belichick has never drafted in the top five, but this season is certainly trending in that direction. That’s the bad news. The good news? This is a great draft for a quarterback-needy team to own an early pick. Maye is a young player and not without his faults, but he has promising talent and more big-time throws on his tape than any other passer in this class.”

In 12 games with the North Carolina Tar Heels this season, Maye has thrown for 3,608 yards and 24 touchdowns against nine interceptions. While he has had a strong stat line this season, Maye performed even better in 2022, recording 4,321 yards and 38 touchdowns with just seven picks. On top of his passing ability, Maye has also produced on the ground as he ran for 698 yards and seven touchdowns in 2022 and 449 yards, along with nine TDs this season.

The 6’4″ 230-pound quarterback has excellent size, a big arm, and the ability to make plays with his legs that will translate to the NFL, especially with the new style of play the NFL has seen over recent years with the emergence of QBs such as Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert, Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts, and Josh Allen to name a few.

As long as the Patriots continue their losing ways, they will put themselves in a prime position to draft their new franchise quarterback and hopefully get back to the winning ways that fans and this organization have known for the last two decades.

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