Jake Bailey

Patriots Sign Jarrett Stidham, Three Other Draft Picks

The day after signing Benjamin Watson, the Patriots have wrapped up most of their draft class. The team announced the signing of four of their remaining picks today. After inking second round pick Joejuan Williams and two others yesterday, only first round receiver N’Keal Harry and third-rounders defensive end Chase Winovich and running back Damien Harris remain unsigned.

  • 4-118: OL Hjalte Froholdt¬†(Arkansas)
  • 4-133: QB Jarrett Stidham (Auburn)
  • 5-163: P Jake Bailey (Stanford)
  • 7:252: CB Ken Webster (Ole Miss)

The Patriots’ drafting of Stidham of course raised some eyebrows because of the position he plays. Stidham had a down year at Auburn in 2018, but many observers chalked that up more to the poor offense he was playing in rather than anything he was doing wrong. After his 2017 season the former Baylor transfer was thought of as a potential Day 2 pick, but his stock took a bit of a tumble last year.¬†

He’ll now get the chance to develop behind Tom Brady, and could potentially position himself as the heir apparent if he shows well. The Patriots have drafted a handful of quarterbacks in recent years, as early as the second round with Jimmy Garoppolo back in 2014. They drafted Jacoby Brissett in the third round in 2016, and both quarterbacks ended up getting traded.

Bailey was a bit of a surprising pick in the fifth round because the Patriots already had an established punter. Ryan Allen has been the team’s punter since 2013, and he just recently re-signed with the team in March. The drafting of Bailey so early would seem to suggest they aren’t entirely sold on Allen.

Froholdt is a Denmark native who has a lot of experience at both guard and center. New England has invested heavily at center this offseason, and Froholdt could be a nice developmental piece.

 

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Eagles Send No. 163 To Patriots

The Patriots had their eyes on some fifth-round performers, trading up for the second time in five picks. This time, a punter will be headed to New England.

For giving up the No. 163 pick, the Eagles will receive the Pats’ No. 167 and No. 246 overall choices.

Stanford punter Jake Bailey will add to the Patriots’ specialists crew. New England re-signed longtime punter (and Super Bowl LIII standout) Ryan Allen in March but did so on a one-year deal. The six-season incumbent now has competition.

Bailey averaged north of 44 yards per punt in his final two seasons with the Cardinal, concluding his college career as the school’s all-time punting average leader (43.8 yards). He finished as a three-time All-Pac-12 selection. Bailey is this draft’s second punter taken, following the 49ers’ fourth-round selection of Mitch Wishnowsky.