New England Patriots

Aug 29, 2019; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots defensive back Duke Dawson (29) reacts after dropping a pass during the second half against the New York Giants at Gillette Stadium. (Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports)

By Ty Anderson,

With a glut of defensive backs and a mass cutdown looming, the Patriots got what they could for on-the-outs cornerback Duke Dawson Jr. and sent the 2018 second-round pick to the Broncos in exchange for a draft pick.

But it’s hardly for the return you would have imagined this time last year, as the 2018 second-round pick was shipped to Denver (along with a 2020 seventh-round pick) for a sixth-round selection in 2020, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

A victim of a numbers game that was already working against him, Dawson’s fate was seemingly sealed in Thursday’s preseason finale, as Keion Crossen finished with 12 tackles, an interception, and five passes defended. Dawson, meanwhile, finished with an interception, three tackles, and three passes defended.

While it’s easy to throw the ‘bust’ term at Dawson, it feels worth mentioning that that aforementioned numbers game hurt him this preseason and that a hamstring injury robbed Dawson of his rookie season in New England. There’s also the fact that his second-round selection is almost saved by the Patriots drafting Crossen in the seventh round and signing J.C. Jackson as an undrafted free agent.

Nevertheless, Dawson is still the only second-round pick not to play a single game for the Patriots.

Dawson’s departure leaves the Patriots with 14 defensive backs ahead of this weekend’s cutdown.

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.