Patriots Select S Marte Mapu With The 76th Pick In The 2023 NFL Draft

The New England Patriots selected Sacramento State S Marte Mapu with the No. 76 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Bill Belichick has now selected a defensive player with the first three picks. He could possibly be the replacement for recently retired Devin McCourty.

Perhaps no player improved their NFL Draft profile in the postseason evaluation process than Mapu (6’3/221). A six-year player and Sacramento State program legend, Mapu was named the Big Sky Defensive Player of the Year and a First Team FCS All-American. He was invited to the NFLPA Bowl and proceeded to blow away his peers, intercepting multiple passes and providing all-encompassing sticky coverage all week in practice sessions. The Senior Bowl noticed and gave him a secondary invitation which earned him significant exposure since players don’t end up at the Senior Bowl by accident, though he suffered a chest injury that knocked him out of Combine testing. Mapu held his own at the Senior Bowl by displaying the perfect, Tetris-esque fits he deployed during his days as a linebacker. He has an advanced feel for space in zone and the kind of banger demeanor the NFL looks for in a modern enforcer. Mapu will be an instant special teams contributor with backup box-safety value and the ability to play off ball linebacker in a pinch.