Giardi's Patriots roster projection 2.0: Will Smith out

Giardi's Patriots roster projection 2.0: Will Smith out
August 17, 2014, 3:15 pm

Once again, my Patriots 53-man roster is actually 55. Brandon Browner is a lock, but as you know, is suspended for the first 4 games of the season. The Pats then have a week exemption for Browner following the lifting of said suspension. I’m also keeping Brian Tyms, who like Browner, is also suspended for the first 4 games. He tested positive for Adderall, something he claims to have been on since he was 9 years old. That he failed to clear that with the league, however, is baffling…

Anyway, on to the 53:

Quarterbacks (3)

- Tom Brady

- Ryan Mallett

- Jimmy Garoppolo

I believe Bill Belichick would prefer to carry just two QBs, but despite the impressive progress of the rookie Garoppolo, I still find it hard to believe that the Pats Head Coach would leave the #2 gig to a kid who was playing at Eastern Illinois at this time a year ago. In addition, it would seem to me Belichick and the staff were OK carrying 3 signal callers when they drafted Top Jimmy/Gameday Garoppolo several months back.

Running Backs (4)

- Stevan Ridley

- Shane Vereen

- James White

- Roy Finch

Still haven’t seen what the players are talking about when they praise White, but then again, Friday was the first time the Pats really committed to the run game. As for Finch, I think that explosiveness, especially in the return game, will make the staff decide there’s something there worth keeping around, at least for a little while.

Fullback/Tight End (1)

- James Develin

Well-respected by his peers, but beyond that, someone with some position versatility and toughness that is off the charts.

Wide Receiver (7*)

- Julian Edelman

- Danny Amendola

- Kembrell Thompkins

- Aaron Dobson

- Brandon Lafell

- Josh Boyce

- Brian Tyms***

Edelman and Amendola continue to have terrific camps. Lafell is coming on like gangbusters. And you just heard Brady following Friday’s game pump KT’s tires. Still not sure why Dobson was activated last week when he basically sat around and did nothing, but I’m not a doctor, though I occasionally play one on TV. As for Boyce, I think he’s on the bubble but I’m not ready to burst it yet. Tyms doesn’t count against the 53.

Tight End (3)

- Rob Gronkowski

- Michael Hoomanawanui

- Someone Who’s Not Yet In Foxboro

Even with Develin, I feel the Pats need another body here. Hartsock lasted two practices. Steve Maneri could possibly fill the Matt Mulligan role from a year ago, but he doesn’t look like he could catch a pass with a big net and stickum. So that 3rd TE is currently on someone else’s roster.

Offensive Line (9)

- Nate Solder

- Logan Mankins

- Dan Connolly

- Josh Kline

- Sebastian Vollmer

- Jordan Devey

- Cameron Fleming

- Bryan Stork

- Marcus Cannon

Devey has been getting a ton of reps and while it’s not always been pretty, there’s been improvement. He sticks. Toughest cut perhaps on the entire roster is Ryan Wendell. He was good in 2012, not so good in ‘13. Just think they’re trying to upgrade size-wise and believe that if Stork can get healthy, he’ll be that guy.

Defensive Line (9)

- Chandler Jones

- Rob Ninkovich

- Vince Wilfork

- Tommy Kelly

- Joe Vellano

- Sealver Siliga

- Chris Jones

- Dominique Easley

- Michael Buchanan

A change here from my first roster projection. I’m not seeing it with Will Smith. And I could totally seeing him as a player who is still out there after week one, when the contract is no longer guaranteed. I also added Joe Vellano. He was starting at right defensive end in the 3-4 Friday, obviously can play inside, and with both Jones and Siliga out for a bit, seems to make sense.

Linebackers (5)

- Jerod Mayo

- Don’t’a Hightower

- Jamie Collins

- James Anderson

- Chris White

Tempted to cut Chris White, but he’s a core 4 special teamer, and in jettisoning Beauharnais, the Pats have no real depth inside. I’d look for them to be active on the waiver wire in the coming weeks.

Defensive Backs (10*)

- Darrelle Revis

- Malcolm Butler

- Logan Ryan

- Brandon Browner***

- Kyle Arrington

- Alfonzo Dennard

- Devin McCourty

- Duron Harmon

- Pat Chung

- Nate Ebner

Change here is putting Butler back on. I should have never taken him off in the first place. And again, Browner starts the year not counting against the 53. Not seeing Tavon Wilson surviving. We’ll see if BB is ready to cast aside a 2nd rounder in year 3.

Specialists (4)

- Steven Gostkowski

- Ryan Allen

- Danny Aiken

- Matt Slater