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Instant analysis of Patriots selecting OT Caedan Wallace with No. 68 pick

Everyone was left wondering when the New England Patriots were going to address offensive tackle after they used the No. 37 overall pick of the 2024 NFL draft on wide receiver Ja’Lynn Polk.

But it was soon after with pick No. 68 in the third round that the team decided to take Penn State offensive tackle Caedan Wallace.

Ultimately, it’s another solid draft pick by de facto general manager Eliot Wolf. Wallace won’t generate much buzz on paper since he mostly flew under the radar at Penn State playing across from first-round pick Olu Fashanu.

Yet, the reality is he’s a four-year starter at right tackle, who the Patriots view as athletic enough to swing to the left side. When speaking with media members after getting drafted, Wallace said he has played at every position on the offensive line.

If anything, it speaks to the rare athleticism and talent he possesses as a player.

Wallace didn’t always draw the hardest matchups on the right side, but that’s more about how good Fashanu was at the position. There’s no arguing the fact that Wallace was one of the more consistent and reliable right tackles in the country.

The Patriots are essentially rebuilding their offensive tackle depth, and Wallace is a worthy addition to the room. Chuks Okorafor is expected to be in line to take top reps at left tackle, but it’s important to keep in mind that he’d also be moving over from right tackle. So he could potentially get pushed for the starting job by Wallace.

The Patriots are probably not done at offensive tackle, and it could ultimately be an open competition to find the best blindside protector for rookie quarterback Drake Maye in training camp.

Story originally appeared on Patriots Wire