By Ed Thompson
Scout.com, March 16, 2009
Scout.com Senior NFL Analyst Ed Thompson has learned that West Virginia QB Pat White is working out for the New England Patriots this week.
A source has told Scout.com that West Virginia quarterback Pat White will be working out for the New England Patriots on Tuesday, March 17.
After watching White's speed and nifty moves as a runner, some NFL scouts were projecting White as a potential wide receiver who could also provide plenty of excitement as a return specialist. He rushed for 947 yards, an average of more than 81 yards per contest and ran the ball into the end zone eight times.
But the Mountaineers' signal-caller has made it clear that he could also have a successful career as an NFL quarterback.
. . .
While Tom Brady is expected to be ready to resume his role as the Patriots' starter this season, his former back-up, Matt Cassel will be leading the Kansas City Chiefs offense this year. Cassel was traded to Kansas City after initially being designated as the team's franchise player, preventing him from hitting the market as an unrestricted free agent.
Currently slotted into the No. 2 role, by default, is second-year player Kevin O'Connell, a 6-foot-5, 225-pound passer out of San Diego State.
With White obviously on New England's radar, it appears that the Patriots are at least considering using one of their higher draft picks to give O'Connell a legitimate training camp battle rather than allowing him to automatically slide into the back-up role.
. . .
UPDATE (3/20/09) - The Boston Globe reports:
According to league sources, White worked out as both a wide receiver and a quarterback for the Patriots, who might be viewing him as a versatile player that they could use in their own version of the Wildcat, which grew in popularity around the NFL after the Miami Dolphins used it to score a 38-13 victory over the Patriots on Sept. 21.
UPDATE (3/25/09) - Mel Kiper adds:
Pat White, maybe New England. You keep hearing New England,” Kiper said. ”They have some interest in Pat White for obvious reasons. They got torched by the Wildcat. Maybe now they want to return the favor and get the ultimate quarterback who can do some damage in that regard. So, if New England is in fact one of those teams who is going to look at him, the late second round isn’t out of the realm of possibility for him.