New England Patriots

UCLA Athletics - 2022 UCLA Bruins Football versus the University of Arizona Wildcats at The Rose Bowl, Pasadena, CA. November 12th, 2022 Copyright: Don Liebig/ASUCLA

The Patriots’ run on interior offensive linemen continues. With their first four picks of Day 3 of the NFL draft, they’ve now drafted two guards and a center.

Their latest pick is guard Atonio Mafi out of UCLA, who they selected with the 144th overall pick, a fifth-round selection. They acquired the pick by trading down from 135th overall, picking up 144 and 214 from the Las Vegas Raiders (who took Purdue quarterback Aidan O’Connell).

  • At UCLA, Mafi appeared in a school record 56 games with 30 starts. He primarily played left guard, but spent significant time at right guard in 2021.

    Mafi brings great size to the guard position at 6-foot-3, 338 pounds. He comes off the line with good power, but doesn’t have the lateral movement skills some other Patriots guards do. He projects mainly as a right guard in New England.

    The Patriots had a chance to get very familiar with Mafi when they coached him at the Shrine Bowl back in January. Mafi stood out as one of the better linemen at the event.

  • In New England, Mafi will compete in what will is now a crowded guard room. He joins fourth-round pick Sidy Sow, as well as 2021 draft picks Cole Strange and Chasen Hines. Starting right guard Michael Onwenu is entering a contract year.

    Pending a trade, the Patriots now have a relatively big gap in picks. They’re set to be back on the clock in the sixth round, at 187th overall.

  • 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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