It’s Super Bowl week, but in this week’s mailbag, we’ll focus on questions about New England Patriots wide receiver options, the quarterback class in the 2022 NFL Draft and how Daniel Jones will look in a new-look New York Giants offense.
I’m not sure if you mean for 2022 or 2023, but it affects them in both seasons. Sean Payton was the New Orleans Saints’ play-caller, and it seems like they’re still trying to find an offensive coordinator who will continue to run that offense this season. Long-time offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael was the obvious choice, but according to Nola.com's Jeff Duncan, Carmichael will remain on staff but not as offensive coordinator.
Kris Richard & Ryan Nielsen will be strong candidates for promotion to defensive coordinator on Dennis Allen's new Saints staff. I've heard Allen will likely hire someone from outside to be the offensive coordinator. Pete Carmichael is expected to remain on staff, but not as OC.
— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncan_) February 8, 2022
So, just the fact that New Orleans will have to hire an outside offensive coordinator – maybe Eric Bieniemy? – will affect them.
In 2023, the Saints could be receiving compensation for Payton if he decides to return to coaching. There’s a joke – that might not be a joke at all, but I don’t want to call it anything more than that – around the NFL that it’s a foregone conclusion that Payton will be Dallas Cowboys’ head coach in 2023. The Saints shouldn’t let him go for free, and while they’d certainly be in better shape if Payton was still their head coach, getting some draft picks if he decides to return to coaching elsewhere is certainly better than nothing as a consolation prize.
The Carolina Panthers should be hoping that one of the top three offensive tackles – either N.C. State’s Ikem Ekwonu, Alabama’s Evan Neal or Mississippi State’s Charles Cross – are available at No. 6 overall, but that’s not necessarily a guarantee. All three could go off the board in the top five because their are plenty of offensive-line needy teams across the NFL.
Fixing the offensive line is certainly a priority for the Panthers this offseason, but adding a capable starting quarterback should be the main priority.
@FrogmansWorld:#MailDoug #PFFMailDoug do you believe that Belichick will draft Mac a Bama No. 1 WR and or trade for No. 1?
The question about how the Patriots will address the wide receiver position this offseason is really good. They could just run it back with Jakobi Meyers, Kendrick Bourne and Nelson Agholor, who are all starting-caliber wide receivers and all played relatively well with Mac Jones in 2021. Nonetheless, I agree with the notion that the Patriots should be looking for a legitimate top wide receiver for Jones to grow with in New England.
Alabama draft prospects Jameson Williams and John Metchie are intriguing options, but they’re both coming off of torn ACLs suffered late in the college football season, putting their status for training camp at least in question.
I know people want to know if the Patriots would trade for Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley, who missed most of the 2021 season due to personal reasons. I haven’t specifically heard that New England is interested in trading for Ridley, but I do know that there’s a legitimate possibility that Ridley could be looking for a fresh start this offseason and ultimately land somewhere else in his fifth-year contract option year. It seems like the Falcons are already bracing for it, as well.
I look at this year’s NFL draft quarterback class very simply. Liberty’s Malik Willis has the best foot speed and throwing power in addition to the most upside. Does his combination of traits mean he’ll be the next Josh Allen, Justin Herbert or Patrick Mahomes? Absolutely not, but he has desirable skills, and the rest of the quarterbacks in this year’s class seem to be relatively middling.
I would bet on Willis to be the first quarterback off the board in 2022. I don’t know if he can start in Week 1 or if he can be a quality quarterback, but he’s a good prospect. The Pittsburgh Steelers seem to have interest.
Well, I’m not picking the same people as Jonathan Allen.
I actually answered this for The 33rd Team’s Friday five.
@BrownsBR1: Do you believe that, with the new coaches in East Rutherford, Daniel Jones will be able to turn his career around? He hasn't played well, but he's never had a decent staff around him, and the ownership is, reportedly, still backing him up.
I thought 2021 was a make-or-break year for Jones because I expected head coach Joe Judge to last more than two seasons with the Giants. That … didn’t happen. So, now Jones has another make-or-break year with new head coach Brian Daboll.
Daboll is a great coach to help groom Jones. He helped turn Allen into a superstar with the Buffalo Bills. And if Jones can’t show the same progress in 2022, then you kind of know who he is.
The dilemma is whether or not the Giants pick up Jones’ fifth-year option by May 2. Based on what Jones has shown early in his career, it probably wouldn’t be a great idea, but the Giants’ new power structure is at least putting on a front that it believes in Jones.
That’s a great question. Here you go.