New England Patriots

New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - SEPTEMBER 12: Matt Judon #9 of the New England Patriots reacts against the Miami Dolphins during the first half at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

  • The Patriots focused on youth during roster cuts, keeping 10 rookies on their initial roster. Of those 10, a number are expected to play significant roles on both sides of the ball.

    On defensive in particular, Marcus Jones and Jack Jones figures to be at least rotational players in a young cornerback group. Defensive lineman Sam Roberts may factor in as a pass-rush specialist while DaMarcus Mitchell and Brenden Schooler – after a summer spent focused heavily on special teams – extended the team’s streak of having UDFAs make the initial roster.

    Those are the roles those players are expected to play, but what should fans expect from them in those roles? While speaking with the media on Wednesday, Matthew Judon was asked to give his assessment of the team’s defensive rookie class and ended up giving a scouting report of each player.

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  • “Sam, you can obviously see he’s a huge guy” Judon said, beginning with a fellow front seven player in Roberts. “Up front, he’s gonna give you a lot of push and it’s going to be hard to block him with his length.”

    “D-Mitch is excellent on special teams,” Judon said of Mitchell, another edge rusher. “And on defense he’s a high-motor, high-energy guy. So that’s going to be a really good change up.”

    “Jack – we’re going to see what he can do out there on an island,” Judon noted of the Patriots’ fourth-round pick. “Very good hips, very good.”

    “Then we’ve got Marcus at the safety and nickel spot,” Judon added on the other Patriots’ rookie corner. “You can see what he can do.”

    “And then we’ve got Schooler,” Judon concluded. “Very good on special teams.”

    Judon concluded by pointing out that while the rookies have been impressive to this point, the real test starts now. “It’s all different with the start of the regular season. Everything is different, they’ll all count,” Judon explained. “Y’all talk, y’all actually start taking stats, and keeping them for the rest of their lives.”

    “So right now, we just have to see what those guys can do throughout these practices,” Judon continued. “Then when we put them in the game, we put hope and faith in them. And as their career goes along, they’ll develop. But right now, we don’t really know.”

    As Judon points out the Patriots will be putting a lot of faith in their rookies this year – especially in the secondary. Their development will be key to the team’s success and an important thing to track throughout the season. As Judon points out, they appear to be starting from a solid foundation.

  • Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at

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