Sat Apr 27 7:36pm ET
By MARK FARINELLA
Players: Tom Brady, Matt Cassel, Brian Hoyer, Ryan Mallett, Rob Gronkowski, Rex Burkhead, Josh Gordon, Jimmy Garoppolo, James White, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Jacoby Brissett, Danny Etling, Braxton Berrios, Sony Michel, Ryan Izzo
Vanderbilt cornerback Joejuan Williams poses with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell after the New England Patriots selected Williams in the second round of the NFL football draft, Friday, April 26, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) Jarrett Stidham now stands where several others have before him - as a possible successor to Tom Brady as quarterback of the New England Patriots.
But like nine other drafted signal-callers before him, Stidham knows it's best to concentrate solely upon making the football team first and worry later about what his role may be when the ageless Brady finally decides to hang up his cleats.
''It's a tremendous opportunity to learn under him and (backup) Brian Hoyer,'' said Stidham, the Auburn quarterback selected Saturday by the Patriots in the fourth round of the draft.
''To be in the same room with those guys and to learn from them, it's going to be great and I'm really looking forward to it.''
Stidham, a two-year starter at Auburn, was the 133rd overall pick, 66 positions higher than Brady's selection in 2000.
Since then, the Patriots have drafted Rohan Davey, Kliff Kingsbury, Matt Cassel, Kevin O'Connell, Zac Robinson, Ryan Mallett, Jimmy Garoppolo, Jacoby Brissett and Danny Etling.
Of them, only Cassel had any significant playing time with the Patriots, playing most of the 2008 season after Brady, who will be 42 in August, suffered a season-ending knee injury in the opening game against Kansas City.
The Patriots also signed Hoyer, their current backup, as an undrafted free agent in 2009 and brought him back to the team in 2017 after brief tenures with six other NFL teams.
''I don't think I feel any pressure,'' Stidham said. ''I'm sure everybody wants to be as good as Tom Brady someday, but I've got to take it one day at a time. I'm going to work as absolutely as hard as I can to make sure I can do whatever it is to help this organization out.''
Nick Caserio, the Patriots' director of player personnel, came away impressed with Stidham after a lengthy meeting with him at Auburn's pro day.
''He's a smart kid, pretty mature, picks things up well,'' Caserio said. ''So we'll see how it goes. He's going to transition into a system that's a little bit different in terms of play-calling and some of the other things he'll be asked to do here. But he's an impressive kid.''
The Patriots made 10 selections in all over the three days, engineering seven trades, including three with the Los Angeles Rams, whom they defeated 13-3 in the Super Bowl.
WHO THEY GOT
Although they did not address the hole at tight end left by the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, the Patriots appeared to find several players they expect to contribute immediately.
At the top of that list would be their first-round pick, wide receiver N'Keal Henry of Arizona State, whose 6-foot-3 size and productivity should help the Patriots stretch the field if suspended veteran Josh Gordon is not reinstated by the league.
Vanderbilt cornerback Joejuan Williams, taken in the second round, will have the chance to flank Pro Bowl veteran Stephon Gilmore, while seventh-round pick Ken Webster of Mississippi could add depth.
Yodny Cajuste of West Virginia and Hjalte Froholdt of Arkansas bolster the Patriots' offensive line, Cajuste potentially at right tackle, while defensive linemen Chase Winovich of Michigan and Byron Cowart of Maryland could fill vacancies created by free-agency departures.
Jake Bailey of Stanford, the first right-footed punter selected in Bill Belichick's 20 drafts in New England, will challenge recently resigned veteran Ryan Allen.
The Patriots selected Alabama running back Damien Harris in the third round, 87th overall. Harris joins a talented position group that includes Sony Michel and James White, but his addition may put the oft-injured Rex Burkhead at risk. This may have been the Patriots' only ''best athlete available'' pick of the first two days.
HOW THEY DID
The true measure of a draft isn't always apparent immediately, but the Patriots appeared to take an effective, targeted approach to fill needs at receiver, cornerback, and the offensive and defensive lines. But other than recent free-agency signee Austin Seferian-Jenkins, the Patriots have not replaced the offensive productivity of Gronkowski at tight end.
Any discussion of the Patriots' remaining needs for 2019 has to include consideration of the 2018 draft. Several 2018 selections are returning from the injured reserve list and are expected to compete for positions the Patriots didn't address in this draft.
Included among those are: tackle Isaiah Wynn, cornerback Duke Dawson, linebackers Ja'Whaun Bentley and Christian Sam, wide receiver Braxton Berrios, and tight end Ryan Izzo. Otherwise, the Patriots' staff will look to add several undrafted free agents over the next few days.
Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed (concussion) has suffered multiple concussions during his career, and some in the Redskins organization as well as around the NFL are worried that Reed may not be able to play again, according to sources.
Fantasy Spin: Fantasy players will need to monitor the situation to see if Reed will be cleared to play again at some point. Vernon Davis will continue to serve as the starting tight end for the Redskins but probably should be considered a No. 2 fantasy tight end.
Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph has caught 3-of-6 targets for nine receiving yards through two weeks. He has fallen into the touchdown-dependent desperation-play territory as he just isn't seeing enough usage to be fantasy-relevant. The Vikings are big favorites (-9) at home, so it seems likely that Rudolph will be run-blocking much more often than running routes. He is still playing every offensive snap so the chance at a random red zone touchdown is there, but there are higher-upside TE2 options than the unexciting Rudolph.
Philadelphia Eagles TE Dallas Goedert (calf) is active for Week 3's game against the Detroit Lions.
Kansas City Chiefs RB LeSean McCoy (ankle) is officially active for the team's Week 3 game.
Fantasy Spin: It is not known if McCoy will be in the starting lineup, but he should receive a decent amount of touches against the Baltimore Ravens. He can be considered at least a flex option in most leagues.
Indianapolis Colts RB Marlon Mack (calf) is officially active for the team's Week 3 game.
Fantasy Spin: Mack will receive most of the carries in the running game despite the injury and has played well in the first two games of the season. He can be a No. 2 running back in all fantasy leagues this week.
Detroit Lions LB Jarrad Davis (ankle) is active for Week 3's game against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (quadriceps) is officially active for the team's Week 3 game.
Fantasy Spin: Hilton has shown solid chemistry with Jacoby Brissett over the first two weeks and will continue to be the focal point in the passing game. He is a must-start option in all fantasy leagues.
After being a healthy scratch through the first two weeks of the season, New England Patriots rookie running back Damien Harris will make his NFL debut on Sunday with James White (personal) out. Harris isn't likely to see enough snaps to be fantasy relevant this week, but if he looks good in his limited role it could bode well for his chances of cracking the rotation moving forward.
The New York Jets have declared QB Sam Darnold, WR Demaryius Thomas, DE John Franklin-Myers, LB Jordan Jenkins, DT Quinnen Williams, DE Jordan Willis and LB C.J. Mosley inactive for Week 3.
The Cincinnati Bengals have declared WR A.J. Green, QB Jacob Dolegala, OT Mike Jordan, OT Cordy Glenn, CB B.W. Webb, DT Ryan Glasgow and DL Kerry Wynn inactive for Week 3.
The Green Bay Packers have declared OT Cole Madison, OL Adam Pankey, WR Jake Kumerow, RB Dexter Williams, CB Ka'dar Hollman, DT Montravius Adams and LB Oren Burks inactive for Week 3.
The Oakland Raiders have declared OT David Sharpe, QB DeShone Kizer, WR Dwayne Harris, WR Trevor Davis, DL Corey Liuget, OG Gabe Jackson and WR Ryan Grant inactive for Week 3.
Green Bay Packers TE Jimmy Graham (groin) is active for Week 3's game against the Denver Broncos.
Philadelphia Eagles WR Alshon Jeffery (calf) is not active for Week 3's game against the Detroit Lions.
Baltimore Ravens TE Mark Andrews (foot) is officially active for the team's Week 3 game.
Fantasy Spin: Andrews has been a big part of the passing game over the first two games and will continue to receive plenty of targets. He should be a starting option in all fantasy leagues.
Kansas City Chiefs running back LeSean McCoy is active for the team's Week 3 meeting with the Baltimore Ravens. With Damien Williams out and rain in the forecast, Shady should see a fairly sizable workload. He should be a low-end RB2 for this matchup, but with the upside to outperform that in this Andy Reid offense. Darwin Thompson will get some snaps at running back but isn't a huge threat to McCoy.
The Indianapolis Colts will have running back Marlon Mack (calf) and wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (quad) will both play against Atlanta in Week 3. Both players were game-time decisions but will be good to go. Fantasy owners should feel comfortable playing Mack, though he's likely to see fewer snaps than he does most weeks. Hilton, meanwhile, is in an offense that isn't nearly as prolific without quarterback Andrew Luck and should be considered a WR3 most weeks, with the quad injury adding in a good amount of uncertainty this time around.
The Indianapolis Colts have declared LB Jabaal Sheard, LB Darius Leonard, OT Le'Raven Clark, DL Jihad Ward, S Marvell Tell, RB Jonathan Williams and TE Hale Hentges inactive for Week 3.
The Miami Dolphins have declared WR Albert Wilson, SS Reshad Jones, S Doug Middleton, RB Myles Gaskin, DL Tank Carradine, OG Chris Reed and OT Isaiah Prince inactive for Week 3.