Tyquan Thornton's role model at WR will excite Patriots fans


The New England Patriots have a checkered past, at best, when it comes to drafting wide receivers under Bill Belichick.

Tyquan Thornton, whom the team selected in the second round (50th overall) on Friday, will become the latest to attempt and buck the trend.

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If he winds up being even half as productive as the current NFL receiver he says he tries to model his game after, Thornton will wind up enjoying his stay in Foxboro far more than N'Keal Harry, Aaron Dobson, Chad Jackson and several other highly-drafted receivers who never did pan out.

In his initial conference call with reporters after being drafted, Thornton said he models his game after All-Pro wide receiver Davante Adams.

"I love how he creates separation at the top of the route, and line of scrimmage as well," Thornton said. "I've tried to mimic that with my releases and route running, while adding speed to it."

Adams, who was traded from the Green Bay Packers to the Las Vegas Raiders earlier this offseason, has made five straight Pro Bowls and was First Team All-Pro in each of the last two seasons. 

Thornton and Adams are the same height, 6-foot-1, and were both drafted in similar spots: Green Bay tabbed Adams with the 53rd overall pick in 2014. Adams, incredibly, was the ninth receiver off the board in 2014, while Thornton was the 11th receiver drafted this season.

With Tom Brady out and Mac Jones in, there's two lines of thinking. Maybe a young receiver will finally be able to break through for the Patriots for the first time since Deion Branch and David Givens 20 years ago, or maybe none of the young receivers Belichick saddled Brady with were ever worth it in the first place.

In either case, Thornton sounds excited to be a part of the organization.

"It's a dream come true," Thornton said. "I'm always willing to learn the game and always coming in to get better."

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