The days following the 2021 NFL Draft have been unusual for the New England Patriots.
In most years, the Patriots supplement their draft class with a raft of undrafted free agents, many of whom sign with New England moments after the final pick is announced. Last year, they quickly signed 15 UDFAs. At least one has made the Patriots’ Week 1 roster in each of the last 17 seasons.
This year? Radio silence.
It’s been nearly 48 hours since the 2021 draft concluded, and exactly zero Patriots undrafted signings have been announced, reported or even rumored.
Why the wait? The shallowness of this year’s draft class — the pool of available prospects was roughly one-third the size of last year’s — could explain it. The Patriots also loaded up their roster with veteran free agents and should have fewer spots up for grabs than usual this summer.
Head coach Bill Belichick did suggest the Patriots would be active in the UDFA market, however.
“We’ll just take the free agency process with the undrafted players as it comes and see how that goes and just keep working through things,” Belichick said Saturday after the draft wrapped up. “There’s still a lot of work to be done. We certainly had players come to our team after the draft process is over — David Andrews, J.C. Jackson, J.J. Taylor. You can go right down the line. There have been a lot of them. We’ll continue to work through the draft and rookie process now and try to improve the team in any way we can.”