New England Patriots

New England Patriots

New England Patriots

  • As free agency takes the headlines across the NFL, teams are still continuing with the pre-draft process as well. Right now, that process means the Pro Day circuit.

    One of the three Power Five schools holding their workouts on Tuesday is Clemson, which has seven players projected to go in this year’s draft. Among those in attendance at that workout? Patriots defensive line coach DeMarcus Covington and director of college scouting Camren Williams.

  • This has been a busy offseason for Covington. He was a defensive coordinator at the Senior Bowl, and then interviewed for multiple defensive coordinator openings in the NFL last month. It looks like his role for the Patriots may be growing, as he’s out helping work the player evaluation portion of the pre-draft process. It makes sense Covington would be at Clemson specifically too, given their top prospects all play on the defensive front – including two defensive linemen.

    Pro days are a big part of Williams’ job. He was promoted to his current job last July, his second promotion in as many years.

    So, who are they there to watch? Here’s a look at the top players Covington and Williams will be seeing at Clemson’s Pro Day.

  • DE Myles Murphy

    Oct 8, 2022; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive end Myles Murphy (98) eyes a Boston College Eagles ball carrier during the second quarter at Alumni Stadium. Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

    Oct 8, 2022; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Clemson Tigers defensive end Myles Murphy (98) eyes a Boston College Eagles ball carrier during the second quarter at Alumni Stadium. Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

    Murphy is the top player from Clemson in this class, and is expected to go in the middle of the first round. At 6-foot-5, 275 pounds Murphy is a very well rounded edge defender who should be able to play on all three downs in the NFL. He’s an exhausting matchup for opposing blockers with his quick first step and high motor. Even with a raw skillset he has a knack for finding his way to the quarterback, and projects as a difference-making pass rusher with the right coaching.

  • DT Bryan Bresee

    Oct 22, 2022; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson defensive lineman Bryan Bresee (11) sacks Syracuse quarterback Garrett Shrader (6) during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina on Saturday, October 22, 2022. Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

    Oct 22, 2022; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson defensive lineman Bryan Bresee (11) sacks Syracuse quarterback Garrett Shrader (6) during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina on Saturday, October 22, 2022. Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

    The top recruit in his high school class in 2020, Bresee comes away from three years at Clemson a projected late first round pick. At 6-foot-5, 298 pounds he’s the kind of athletic, three-down defensive tackle that’s becoming very popular in today’s NFL. There’s certainly some Christian Barmore-like plays in his game. The biggest knock on his game coming out of college is his health – a number of injuries limited him to just 912 total snaps over the last three years.

  • LB Trenton Simpson

    CLEMSON, SOUTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 19: Trenton Simpson #22 of the Clemson Tigers celebrates a fourth quarter sack against the Miami Hurricanes at Memorial Stadium on November 19, 2022 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

    CLEMSON, SOUTH CAROLINA – NOVEMBER 19: Trenton Simpson #22 of the Clemson Tigers celebrates a fourth quarter sack against the Miami Hurricanes at Memorial Stadium on November 19, 2022 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)

    Simpson is viewed by many as the top linebacker in this class. He only helped his case with a strong Combine performance, running a 4.43 40-yard dash and putting up 25 reps on the bench at 6-foot-2, 235 pounds. An incredibly athletic and rangy linebacker with experience playing multiple spots and a willingness to hit, he could be the new-age linebacker the Patriots have been looking for in recent years if they’re willing to use the high draft pick that would be needed to land him. He’s currently projected to go late in the first round or early in the second.

  • OLB K.J. Henry

    Oct 22, 2022; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson defensive end K.J. Henry (5) pressures Syracuse quarterback Garrett Shrader (6) during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina on Saturday, October 22, 2022. Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

    Oct 22, 2022; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson defensive end K.J. Henry (5) pressures Syracuse quarterback Garrett Shrader (6) during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina on Saturday, October 22, 2022. Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

    Another former top high school recruit, Henry projects as an early Day 3 pick. He’s a powerful edge defender that projects as an early down player coming out of college, with a chance to develop into a contributing pass rusher. With Anfernee Jennings in a contract year, the Patriots could be in the need for a strong-side run defender in the near future. Henry was also a team captain at Clemson, with NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein describing him as a “community-oriented team captain with high personal character.” He was also on Covington’s team at the Senior Bowl.

  • WR Joseph Ngata

    CLEMSON, SOUTH CAROLINA - SEPTEMBER 17: Joseph Ngata #10 of the Clemson Tigers makes a catch against Myles Brooks #13 of the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs during the first half of their game at Memorial Stadium on September 17, 2022 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

    CLEMSON, SOUTH CAROLINA – SEPTEMBER 17: Joseph Ngata #10 of the Clemson Tigers makes a catch against Myles Brooks #13 of the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs during the first half of their game at Memorial Stadium on September 17, 2022 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

    Those are all of Clemson’s projected draftable players in this year’s class, and they’re the ones really in the spotlight with the Patriots sending a defensive coach to the Pro Day. But there are a couple of offensive players further down the board Patriots fans should be aware of as well.

    One of those players is Ngata, who had a strong week at the Shrine Bowl in Las Vegas (although not for the Patriots-coached team). Ngata, a former five-star recruit, is a big receiver (6-foot-3, 217 pounds) who excels in contested catch situations. He also has special teams experience. Ngata ran a 4.54-second 40 at the Combine. He’s expected to go late on Day 3.

  • TE Davis Allen

    Dec 3, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers tight end Davis Allen (84) catches a touchdown in front of North Carolina Tar Heels linebacker Cedric Gray (33) during the first quarter of the ACC Championship game at Bank of America Stadium. Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

    Dec 3, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers tight end Davis Allen (84) catches a touchdown in front of North Carolina Tar Heels linebacker Cedric Gray (33) during the first quarter of the ACC Championship game at Bank of America Stadium. Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

    Allen, at 6-foot-6, 245 pounds, is a pure red zone threat with his ability to win on 50/50 balls. If he can develop as a route runner he has a chance to be a full-field threat at the position. Right now, his lack of blocking ability leaves his upside as a TE2 for now. He’s projected to go late on Day 3.

  • Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. 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 [email protected].

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