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Experts react to Patriots Day 2 draft picks

See what the experts had to say about the Patriots second and third round draft picks from the 2019 NFL Draft.

Round 2, Pick No. 13: Joejuan Williams, DB, Vanderbilt

Andy Hart, Patriots.com

Mike Reiss, ESPN

Williams' physical makeup stands out, as he is 6-foot-3 5/8 and 211 pounds, and has above average length at the position. He could have the chance to develop behind the scenes as the depth chart is loaded in 2019 with Stephon Gilmore, Jason McCourty, Jonathan Jones, J.C. Jackson, Duke Dawson and Keion Crossen. So this is a case of how the Patriots aren't always thinking of the short-term picture when making their picks. Williams has the potential to be a top corner in the future, but might have trouble breaking through in a front-line role as a rookie if everyone is healthy and playing to their potential.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com

The Patriots' interest in Williams was not a well-kept secret -- he had the versatility they needed in the secondary. Giving up a third-round pick to go get him was not a Belichickian-type move, but if they had a first-round grade on him, I won't blame them for making the deal.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

Grade: A+

He was the captain of my better than team, that tells you what I think about him. I love this kid. The New England Patriots get it. Bill Belichick works the system better than anybody. Belichick the master at work again.

Pro Football Focus

In Joejuan Williams, the Pats get a big physical corner. He was the 88th player on the PFF Big Board, but the Pats get a player who fits their mold and can help to man the spot opposite Stephon Gilmore.

SI.com

Grade: C

Bill Belichick must simply love Williams, because the Pats don’t NEED him and may not even have an active roster spot for him on some Sundays this year. It's worth noting that The MMQB's Albert Breer mocked Williams to the Patriots, saying "Bill Belichick is always looking ahead, and he mentioned in his pre-draft press conference the need to match up with bigger receivers and athletic tight ends." That could be Williams's role in the future.

Mike Tanier, Bleacher Report

Grade: B

Williams is better than the typical elongated scarecrow cornerback: He has good eyes in zone coverage, some closing burst and can turn in transition without signaling into traffic first. But Williams ran a 4.64-second combine 40, and the lack of a third gear is evident on tape, both on the big plays he allowed and the plays where receivers streak past him on overthrows. Williams will always need safety help, but he could be useful as a matchup defender who works underneath zones and swats away fades at the goal line.

Evan Silva, Rotoworld

Ian Rapoport, NFL.com

Mark Daniels, Providence Journal

Nick Underhill, The Athletic Boston

Ben Volin, Boston Globe

Mike Giardi, NFL Network

Christopher Price, Boston Sports Journal

Jeff Howe, The Athletic Boston

Zack Cox, NESN

Round 3, Pick No. 14: Chase Winovich, DE, Michigan

Charles Robinson, Yahoo! Sports

Mike Reiss, ESPN

The 6-foot-2 6/8 and 256-pound Winovich is a high-motor edge player who projects to help fill the void created by Trey Flowers' free-agent departure. One thing that stood out about his play in college was disruption, as he had 34.5 tackles for a loss and 13.5 sacks the past two seasons. In addition, Winovich runs well enough (4.59 in the 40-yard dash) to potentially factor into the special-teams mix. A big personality at Michigan, he could be the 2019 Patriots version of Rob Gronkowski in a sense.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com

They found a steal in Winovich in the third round. He's the type of high-motor, versatile lineman who will be a factor early on.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

Grade: B

Winovich is a try hard player who fits the New England style. His versatility will be big in their defense as they look to replace the production of Trey Flowers on the defensive line.

Pro Football Focus

The Patriots got great value in edge defender Chase Winovich. The 29th player on the PFF Big Board, Winovich posted back to 90.0-plus grades in ’17 and ’18.

SI.com

Grade: A-

He has stellar physical traits, and his effort and fundamentals (which can be honed) fit well in a Patriots scheme that emphasizes setting the edge and finishing pass rushers late in the down.

Mike Tanier, Bleacher Report

Grade: A

Despite his Thor-like hair and biceps and his 18.5 sacks in three seasons, Winovich was somehow overshadowed by Rashan Gary and Devin Bush on the Wolverines front seven. He may have been typecast as a “hustle sack” guy, when in fact Winovich has the athleticism and technique to be a dangerous disruptor at the NFL level.

Mike Giardi, NFL Network

Chris Gasper, Boston Globe

Adam Schefter, ESPN

Round 3, Pick No. 24: Damien Harris, RB, Alabama

Mike Reiss, ESPN

Running back isn't a top need for the Patriots, but this looks like a case where the value of the player led the team in his direction at this point in the draft. The 5-foot-10, 216-pound Harris was productive at Alabama, totaling 476 rushes for 3,073 yards (6.5 avg.) with 23 touchdowns, and was a team captain who was considered a strong locker-room presence. Add in his contributions on special teams (e.g. blocked punt in 2017) and the picture comes into focus as to why he would appeal to the Patriots.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com

Harris is an all-around talent who was worthy of a selection 20 picks earlier than his drafting spot.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

Grade: B

The Patriots picked up an SEC running back in the first round last year, and here they get a nice player who can mix in behind Sony Michel. They had bigger needs, but with all their picks, might as well take him here if you like him.

Mike Giardi, NFL Network

Pro Football Focus

Ben Volin, Boston Globe

Round 3, Pick No. 38: Yodny Cajuste, OL, West Virginia

Mike Reiss, ESPN

Swing offensive tackle was rated as the team's No. 3 need and the 6-foot-4 7/8 and 312-pound Cajuste is a top candidate to fill it. The Patriots have had success drafting and developing offensive linemen under respected line coach Dante Scarnecchia, so his presence adds a layer of confidence to any selection because it surely comes with his recommendation. However, Cajuste's injury history bears watching, as he is coming off pre-draft surgery on his quad and he has battled multiple knee injuries prior to that.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com

Cajuste has injury issues and doesn't have the greatest feet, but he could work his way into starting at right tackle.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

Grade: B

The Patriots get some good value here, as Cajuste could have went 30 picks earlier and no one would complain. He needs some developing, but the Pats have the luxury of doing that. Solid find.

SI.com

With no proven backup tackles on the roster, the Patriots decided they’d develop one. Cajuste is a project, but offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia, at this point, is viewed as a wizard.

Mark Daniels, Providence Journal

Phil Perry, NBC Sports Boston

Mike Giardi, NFL Network

Ben Volin, Boston Globe

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