Here's Where Patriots' Roster Ranks Among All NFL Teams In 2022
By Jason Hall
June 30, 2022
The New England Patriots have the 18th best roster in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus.
PFF, in partnership with ESPN, ranked all 32 NFL teams ahead of the 2022 NFL season, which included the Patriots at No. 18, breaking down strengths, weaknesses and X factors for each team's starting lineups.
New England's biggest strengths included veteran safety duo Devin McCourty and Adrian Phillips, both of whom finished ranked among the top-12 safeties in the league during the 2021 season, as well as the addition of veteran Jabrill Peppers to the position group.
The Patriots' cornerbacks were included among the team's weaknesses in comparison to recent past defensive units, which included former Pro Bowlers Stephon Gilmore -- who was traded to the Carolina Panthers last season and signed with the Indianapolis Colts this offseason -- and JC Jackson, who signed with the Los Angeles Chargers this past offseason.
PFF also listed tight end Jonnu Smith as an X factor, having been limited to just 168 routes (52nd among NFL tight ends) after signing a four-year, $50 million contract with $30 million guaranteed.
"Smith proceeded to run just 158 routes (52nd most at the tight end position) and post fewer receiving yards than Albert Okwuegbunam, Durham Smythe and Dan Arnold despite appearing in 16 games," PFF's Ben Linsey wrote. "That's not the kind of return on investment that the Patriots were looking for, and they'll be looking for more from Smith this season."