Patriots

NFL Rumors: Patriots host Demaryius Thomas, T.J. Yeldon in free agency

NFL Rumors: Patriots host Demaryius Thomas, T.J. Yeldon in free agency

The New England Patriots added some offensive firepower Wednesday in tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins, but they may not stop there.

The Patriots hosted wide receiver Demaryius Thomas and running back T.J. Yeldon on free-agent visits Wednesday, ESPN's Field Yates reported.

NFL Network's James Palmer added that Thomas' visit appeared to go well.

Thomas has an impressive pedigree -- five Pro Bowl nods and five consecutive 1,000-yard seasons from 2012 to 2016 -- but tore his Achilles late in the 2018 season and was released by the Houston Texans in February.

The Patriots reportedly have discussed trading for Thomas in the past, though -- offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels also worked with the 31-year-old while with the Denver Broncos -- so it makes sense they'd check in on him as a replacement for suspended receiver Josh Gordon.

Yeldon, meanwhile, is a free agent for the first time after a productive 2018 campaign with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The 25-year-old running back tallied 487 receiving yards on 55 receptions with four receiving touchdowns in addition to 414 rushing yards.

The Patriots already have a dual-threat running back in James White, but Yeldon would bring a slightly different skill set to New England.

Thomas and Yeldon weren't the only players to come through Foxboro on Wednesday, as quarterback prospects Daniel Jones and Will Grier reportedly both had pre-draft visits with the Patriots.

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The Best at 32: Top NFL Draft picks taken with 32nd selection

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The Best at 32: Top NFL Draft picks taken with 32nd selection

The Patriots will have a long wait on Thursday night before they are on the clock for their first pick of the 2019 NFL Draft.

It's a position they've found themselves in before. This will be the fourth time in the last 15 years that they've owned the 32nd overall pick. (It would have been the fifth time, but DeflateGate cost them a first-round pick in 2017.)

Will Bill Belichick be able to find some top-tier talent? Tom E. Curran looked at past drafts, and found that some teams have managed to strike gold with pick number 32, though it's far from a sure bet.

Check out Tom's list of the Top 15 players taken at No. 32 overall.>>>>

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NFL draft rumors: Patriots have shown a 'ton of interest' in QB Will Grier

NFL draft rumors: Patriots have shown a 'ton of interest' in QB Will Grier

The New England Patriots currently are slated to close out the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft with pick No. 32, and after passing on Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson in a similar spot in last year's draft, could they use this season's first-rounder to select Tom Brady's eventual successor?

Grier is one of the top quarterbacks in the 2019 NFL Draft and could be selected anywhere from the mid-to-late first round to the early portion of the second round. What level of interest do the Patriots have in Grier with Thursday night's first round fast approaching? Tony Pauline of Draft Analyst reported an update Monday:

The New England Patriots have shown a ton of interest in Grier and could draft him as the first round closes out. The New York Giants also like Grier, and he could be their fallback plan if they don’t take a signal caller in Round 1. The Carolina Panthers also have an infatuation with Grier and will consider him in the second round.

Would the Patriots really take Grier in Round 1, or is this a smokescreen designed to trip up opposing front offices?

The Patriots do need a quarterback of the future. Contrary to what we've seen from Tom Brady in recent seasons, the 41-year-old quarterback will, at some point, start to break down and eventually retire. There aren't any great candidates already on the roster to play the role of Brady's successor, so drafting a QB this weekend makes a lot of sense for New England.

Grier played really well for the Mountaineers last season. He completed 67 percent of his passes for 3,864 yards with 34 touchdown passes and eight interceptions. He reportedly visited with the Patriots earlier this month, as did Duke quarterback Daniel Jones. Missouri quarterback Drew Lock could be available on Day 2 of the draft as well.

Click here for our final 2019 Patriots mock draft roundup>>>

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