Mel Kiper Jr. could see Patriots trading No. 23 overall pick to team needing QB

Ryan Hannable
February 21, 2020 - 12:08 pm

In ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr.'s latest mock draft, he has the Patriots making an interesting selection at No. 23 overall -- Washington quarterback Jacob Eason.

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With plenty of other needs on the roster, this was a bit of a surprise, but speaking on an ESPN conference call this week, Kiper Jr. gave some context.

The NFL Draft guru wouldn't be surprised to see the Patriots trade pick No. 23 to a team that is in need for a quarterback and for it to select Eason.

“That is what usually happens in that 23-32 range -- a team will trade in to get that quarterback, especially later in the first round," he said. "We’ve seen that. I think that is a possibility. That pick could be dealt. Somebody could be trading into the late first to get Eason.”

Bill Belichick loves to make draft day trades and it would not be a huge surprise to see multiple again this year.

Following No. 23 overall, the Patriots do not pick again until they have three selections in the third round. It would be very unusual for Belichick to have that big of a gap between picks, which means it is likely to change sometime between now and Day 2. One way to do that would be trading out of the first round to pick up multiple selections.

Last year alone, Belichick and the Patriots made seven trades during the draft.

Related: Patriots mock draft roundup, version 1.0: Who experts have team selecting heading into NFL Combine