Patriots

Patriots Future: Could Bill Belichick and the Patriots largely punt on this year’s draft?

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(Adam Richins for BSJ)

Continuing our occasional series looking at what lies ahead for the Patriots in the post-Tom Brady Era.

Part INew England has positioned itself to remake franchise in 2021 and beyond

So when going through the 2021 depth chart for the Patriots — all 30 players — one question kept coming back to me:

How are they going to fit any draft picks on this year's roster?

Let me explain why that question kept coming up — and it really didn't have anything to do with wanting to prove Tom Brady wrong, or any of that nonsense that is more sports talk radio fodder than anything else. There are a few different points to make.

The pandemic

We've already reported that NFL teams are preparing for no football-related activities until at least Aug. 1. That means no rookie minicamp, no OTAs, no hanging around and working out the facility, etc. And that's the best case. It's probably just as likely the NFL plays a half-season — or even less.

Talk about stunted growth. It would make