Friday, September 30

Two NFC teams were interested in selecting Patriots WR Tyquan Thornton on Day 2 of NFL Draft, per report

USATSI

The Patriots’ 2022 NFL Draft class has been one of the more scrutinized drafts this offseason. It started when the team took guard Cole Strange in the first round with the 29th overall pick and continued throughout the three-day affair in Las Vegas as many draft experts felt the team was reaching for its prospects. 

One of those picks that was head-scratching to some across the NFL landscape was taking wide receiver Tyquan Thornton in the second round at No. 50 overall. The consensus was that the Baylor wideout would possibly come off the board in the middle rounds, potentially in the fourth. That said, with the draft further in the rear-view mirror, we are getting a better sense of how teams felt about Thornton and some clubs reportedly viewed him in a similar light to New England. 

Thornton was also on the radar of some teams on Day 2, including the Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints, according to ESPN. The report notes that Thornton’s speed and strong interviews made him a late riser in the weeks leading up to the draft. The Patriots were one team that also had him in for a top-30 visit as the draft drew closer.

While the Patriots did trade up from No. 54 to No. 50 to take Thornton, both the Packers and Saints had an opportunity to snatch the pass-catcher in front of New England. Green Bay held the second pick of the second round (No. 34 overall) and opted to take North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson over Thornton. New Orleans also had a pick right ahead of where the Patriots would ultimately end up taking Thornton, but addressed the secondary with the 49th pick by taking corner Alontae Taylor out of Tennessee. The Saints did address receiver in the first round, however, drafting Ohio State’s Chris Olave at No. 11 overall. 

Thornton’s speed is the most enticing thing about his game as he ran a 4.28 at the NFL Scouting Combine, making him the fastest receiver in this class. New England wasn’t hiding its desire to get faster across the roster and have done so with the addition of Thornton. While he does bring speed with him to Foxborough, whether or not Thornton’s actually able to use it to his advantage as he transitions to the NFL is another question entirely. With that in mind, we’ll only truly find out whether the Patriots — and other teams that held him in high regard — were right to take him at that spot once the season gets rolling. 





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