2021 NFL Draft: Patriots studying up on Kyle Trask, looking to trade up in first round, per report


The New England Patriots are still in the market for a quarterback, and are looking at plenty of options with prospects as the draft approaches. Per NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah, New England has been “doing a lot of homework” on Kyle Trask, who is projected to fall in the mid rounds of the 2021 NFL Draft. The Patriots have several picks in the third (No. 96) and fourth rounds (No. 120, No. 122, and No. 139), leaving a few options open in case they are interested in Trask. 

Trask isn’t the only quarterback the Patriots are looking at in this draft. New England is also fielding calls to get into the top 10 of the draft (the Patriots currently have the No. 15 pick), per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. The Patriots’ desired target at quarterback is believed to be Justin Fields if he falls on draft day. 

The Detroit Lions, Carolina Panthers, and Denver Broncos are candidates to trade down, possibly giving New England an opportunity to move up should the Patriots see fit. New England has Cam Newton as its current starting quarterback, but his eight passing touchdowns were the fewest in a single season by a starting quarterback since Trent Dilfer finished with four in 1995. Newton did rush for 12 touchdowns — the most among quarterbacks — but also threw 10 interceptions as the Patriots finished with a losing record for the first time since 2000. 

Fields finished fourth in the FBS in completion percentage (70.2) and is the first quarterback in Big Ten history to throw for 40 touchdowns and rush for 10 touchdowns in a season. He ended his Ohio State career with a 67-to-9 touchdown-to-interception ratio with 19 rushing touchdowns. 

Trask led the FBS with 43 passing touchdowns in 2020, throwing for 4,283 yards (third in the FBS) — becoming the first player in SEC history with at least four touchdown passes in six straight games. His 43 touchdown passes trail only Joe Burrow and Drew Lock for the most in a season in SEC history. 

As of right now, the Patriots will miss out on one of the top five quarterbacks in this draft — which is where Trask enters the picture. If they trade up into the top ten, Bill Belichick will select a quarterback in the first round for the first time as head coach of the franchise. 

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