The New England Patriots have started signing players at a faster clip since the NFL Draft ended. They have inked an undrafted free agent, a castoff from the New York Jets, and now two of the rookies they drafted in April. One of those rookies is UCF star, WR Tre Nixon.
The Patriots signed Nixon, whom they drafted in the seventh round last month, and William Sherman, an offensive tackle out of Colorado, selected in the sixth round.
New England still has several players left from their rookie class to ink to contracts, but it’s not a matter of if, but when these deals will become official and announced.
Reaction to Patriots Drafting Nixon
There isn’t much expected from a 23-year-old wide receiver taken in the seventh round of the NFL Draft. However, Nixon was the final pick and a reported favorite of legendary talent evaluator Ernie Adams.
That distinction does add a bit more significance, and it’s not as if Nixon is without talent.
CLNS’ Evan Lazar sounds cautiously optimistic about Nixon’s chances to make the Patriots’ roster and his speed. He tweeted:
Who knows if #Patriots seventh-round pick Tre Nixon will even push for a roster spot, but he can definitely run vertical routes and beat press coverage. Nice “dead leg” release here to move the CB outside to open up the inside, then accelerates past to create a big play.
According to Patriots salary cap expert Miguel Bezan, Nixon stands to make a considerable amount of money if he can make the Week 1 roster. Take a look at the $660,000 boom he gets if he makes the 53-man roster.
Tre Nixon‘s cap numbers should be 2021 – $24,669 (now) – $684,669 if he makes 53-man roster 2022- $849,669 2023 – $964,669 2024 – $1,079,669 APY=$894,669 The only guaranteed amount is his $98,676 signing bonus.
If there is anyone on the Patriots’ roster who is in a position to make a meaningful impression, it is Nixon.
Reaction to Patriots Drafting Sherman
Sherman was drafted to add depth to the Patriots’ retooled offensive line. While the team picked up the fifth-year option for Isaiah Wynn and acquired Trent Brown via trade, there isn’t much depth at tackle behind the starters.
Yodny Cajuste has still never appeared in an NFL game. Almost no one else on the roster stands out as a surefire NFL tackle, though last year’s sixth-round pick, Mike Onwenu, was above-average on the right side when injuries to the unit forced him there in 2020.
Onwenu’s skill and versatility made him a diamond in the rough for the Patriots in 2020. The same can be said for 2020 seventh-round pick Justin Herron.
If Sherman can be the Patriots’ latest late-round steal, the offensive line will have even more depth than expected.
Patriots Opinions believes Sherman will beat out Cajuste for a roster spot.
OT: Isaiah Wynn, Trent Brown, Justin Herron and William Sherman.
I gave Sherman the nod over Cajuste for the last OT spot. You already have versatility with Herron but it’s pretty clear the more you can do gets you far with this team and Sherman can play anywhere on the line.
— Go Pats (@PatriotOpinions) May 7, 2021
Bezan broke down a similar potential salary structure for Sherman.
William Sherman‘s cap numbers will be 2021 – $44,107 (now) – $704,107 if he makes 53-man roster 2022- $869,107 2023 – $984,107 2024 – $1,099,107 APY=$914,107 The only guaranteed amount is his $176,428 signing bonus.
The Patriots kick off the preseason on August 12, and that’s the first time we’re likely to see what Nixon or Sherman can do on the field.