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Patriots defensive back Devin McCourty intercepted a pass and ran it back for an 84-yard touchdown on Monday night Kendarius Webster Jersey Boys , and in the process he became the fastest ball carrier in the NFL this season.McCourty reached a top speed of 22.05 miles per
hour, according to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, which was the fastest any player
has run with the ball in his hands all year.Unsurprisingly, the previous top
speed was recorded by Kansas City’s Tyreek Hill, who reached a top speed of
21.95 mph on a 58-yard touchdown catch in Week One, and reached a top speed of
21.78 mph on a 91-yard punt return touchdown in the same game. Until McCourty on
Thursday, those were the two fastest runs in the NFL this season.Hill still has
the fastest speed the NFL’s Next Gen Stats have recorded since the league
started making player speed publicly available in 2016. Hill’s fastest run came
in 2016, when he reached an NFL-best speed of 23.24 mph. New England just won
the Super Bowl; how much did the team’s sophomores contribute?"The success of a
team’s rookie class cannot be determined after just one season. Evaluating after
year two, on the other hand, gives a slightly better indication as to who has
successfully been integrated into a franchise. Not only can a bigger sample size
of performance be evaluated but the players themselves also have more experience
in the system and a whole offseason to prepare for an upcoming season.With that
in mind, the New England Patriots’ 2017 rookie collective has had an
inconsistent second year with the club. While some of them have been able to
become contributors on the team that won Super Bowl 53 in February, most have
found little to no success with the Patriots last year. With that in
mind Infant Chase Winovich Jersey , let’s take a look at how the Patriots’ 2017 rookie class fared in 2018 to find out who has made the famed second-year
jump.Overall, New England had sixteen rookies on its final 2017 payroll, be it
the active roster, the practice squad, or an inactive list. The following of
them are no longer with the team:The most notable of those eleven players are
offensive tackle Antonio Garcia, tight end Jacob Hollister, linebacker Harvey
Langi, and wideout Riley McCarron. Garcia was drafted in the third round in 2017
but failed to play even a single game for the team due to a medical condition.
Hollister, Langi and McCarron, meanwhile, did dress up for the Patriots but saw
their tenures with the club cut short due to trade (Hollister), health (Langi)
and performance (McCarron).This leaves only five members of New England’s 2017
rookie class who are still with the team.DT Adam ButlerSince joining the
Patriots as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Vanderbilt Chase Winovich Jersey Draft , Butler had a productive two years in New England. Appearing in all 19 of the team’s games in both 2017 and 2018, Butler
carved out a role as a situational interior pass rusher — one that was also used
against the run on a regular basis during last year’s regular season. His forte,
however, remained the pass rush and Butler stayed consistent in this area in
year two.Over the course of the 2018 season, he registered 18 pressures while
being on the field for 39.0% of New England’s combined defensive snaps: Butler
notched 3.0 sacks, 6 quarterback hits and an additional 9 hurries. While nobody
is going to confuse him with Aaron Donald, his contributions on defense and in
the kicking game have been steady over the course of his first two years in the
NFL.Butler therefore enters the preparations for the Patriots’ 2019 as a de
facto roster lock at the defensive tackle position alongside Lawrence Guy and
free agency signing Mike Pennel.OT Cole CrostonAnother undrafted free agent
pickup, Croston was also able to make his way onto the Patriots’ 53-man roster
during his rookie year. He appeared in three games in a reserve role as an
offensive tackle, playing a total of eight offensive snaps as well as one in the
kicking game. Last season, however, the Iowa product failed to build on the
moderate success he enjoyed during his first year as a pro.Croston was among the
Patriots��� early-September roster cuts and later was signed to the team’s
practice squad. While he was promoted to the active team two weeks later, he was
active for only two games. After playing a combined four offensive snaps in
those regular season contests and none on special teams Chase Winovich NFL Jersey , Croston was released again in November andre-signed to the practice squad. He spent the remainder of the regular season
on the scout team.Despite the Patriots losing offensive tackles Trent Brown and
LaAdrian Waddle in free agency, Croston needs to fight for his roster life again
in 2019: Isaiah Wynn, coming back from injured reserve, and offseason additions
Yodny Cajuste and Jared Veldheer make for an intriguing battle at the offensive
tackle position.DE Keionta DavisDavis also went undrafted in 2017 and remained
on the open market for almost four months before the Patriots brought him on
board early in training camp. A bulging disc in his neck that also contributed
to Davis going undrafted, however, ended his rookie campaign before it even
began: he was placed on the non-football injury list when roster cutdowns came
around in September.Davis returned to the field in 2018 and earned a spot on the
Patriots’ 53-man roster as a depth option on the defensive edge. In this role,
the then-24-year-old was active for six games and played a total of 14.9% of New
England’s defensive snaps on the year. Davis ended the year with six tackles as
well as a quarterback hit and three hurries. And while his numbers and playing
time do not stand out, they certainly are a positive development considering
Davis’ 2017 rookie season.Entering 2019, he will have to build on his sophomore
year to earn practice reps and ultimately a roster spot on what is a deep but
certainly not settled defensive edge.DE Derek RiversLike Davis, Rivers also
missed his entire rookie season because of injury: after looking good early on
in his first NFL training camp, the third-round draft pick tore his ACL during
New England’s joint practice sessions with the Houston Texans. One year later,
he returned to the field — his impact Chase Winovich NFL Draft , however, was limited: Rivers appeared in only six regular season games and one playoff contest as a depth option along the
defensive edge.All in all, the Youngstown State product finished his first
healthy season in the league with a 7.9% playing time share as well as two
tackles, a sack and a hurry, and a pair of quarterback hits. In this sense,
Rivers’ 2018 season can be classified like Davis’: neither his playing time nor
his statistics jump off the page, but seeing him healthy throughout the year is
certainly encouraging for a player coming off a major knee injury.Rivers will
certainly be one of the players to watch this summer: he certainly has the
upside to turn into a bigger contributor for the Patriots defense, but so far
has not yet delivered because of his injury and the limited role he was given in
2018.DE Deatrich Wise Jr.A fourth-round pick in 2017, Wise Jr’s rookie campaign
already saw him develop into a major factor along the Patriots’ defensive line:
appearing in all 19 of the team’s games, he trailed only Trey Flowers in
quarterback disruptions. 2018 was more of the same for the Arkansas product,
even though his playing time numbers and individual statistics went down a bit —
in part because of New England’s additions of Adrian Clayborn and John
Simon.Nevertheless, Wise Jr. was still the number two option at the position
alongside Flowers and played a combined 37.5% of the club’s defensive snaps. At
the end of the 2018 playoffs Chase Winovich Buffalo Bills Jersey , he had appeared in 17 of the Patriots’ 19 games and registered 4.5 sacks, 10 hits, and 5 quarterback hurries.
His 19.5 pressures ranked him fifth among New England’s defenders, which speaks
more about the team’s overall depth than a possible dip in performance.With
Flowers and Clayborn no longer a part of the equation, the path is clear for
Wise Jr. to possibly take on an even bigger role in 2019. In flashes — think:
Super Bowl 53 — he has already shown that he can be up to the task and that he
has the coaching staff’s trust.All in all, the Patriots’ 2017 rookie class saw
Butler and Wise Jr. continue their development into key rotational players in
2018. Meanwhile, Davis and Rivers fought their way back from injuries to at
least get some experience at the NFL level. Croston, on the other hand, showed
little more than being an additional body. Safe to say that the upcoming summer
will be big for all five men: either they can (further) build on their first two
years in the league, or their standing on a deep team could be in
jeopardy.
Posted 21 Oct 2019

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