New England Patriots

Report: Patriots had ‘lengthy' meeting with this QB draft prospect

McCarthy has skyrocketed up draft boards over the last year.

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The New England Patriots sent a large contingent to Michigan's Pro Day last week, where several exciting NFL Draft prospects worked out and/or met with teams.

The group of Patriots staffers present in Ann Arbor for the event included head coach Jerod Mayo, de facto GM Eliot Wolf, offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt and quarterbacks coach T.C. McCartney.

The most intriguing prospect at Michigan's Pro Day was quarterback J.J. McCarthy, who has steadily risen up pre-draft rankings and expert mock drafts since leading the Wolverines to a national championship in January.

Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer reported Monday that the Patriots were one of three teams, along with the Seattle Seahawks and Washington Commanders, that had "lengthy" meetings with McCarthy last week.

McCarthy wasn't asked to carry the offense at Michigan as the Wolverines primarily used a run-heavy scheme led by running back Blake Corum. But when McCarthy did need to make plays, he usually rose to the challenge.

He went 27-1 with a 68.3 completion percentage, 5680 yards, 44 touchdowns and nine interceptions over two seasons as Michigan's starter.

Taking McCarthy at No. 3 overall is probably too much of a reach, but if the Patriots trade down into the second half of the top 10, maybe the Michigan quarterback would be an option in that range.

Quarterback is the Patriots' biggest need right now. Sure, offensive tackle and wide receiver need serious upgrades, too, but it's hard to win in the NFL without a quarterback. It's also not common to pick in the top three, especially in a year with three or four top-tier quarterback prospects.

The Patriots must take advantage of this opportunity, whether they remain at No. 3 and take Drake Maye or Jayden Daniels, or trade down and consider someone like McCarthy.

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