Current Team: New England Patriots
2016 Stats: 32 tackles/three defended passes/one sack/one forced fumble (college)
The Skinny: Likely made an impact early in his Maryland career as he was forced into the starting lineup. Following that impressive freshman campaign, it was always thought that he would hear his name called during the NFL Draft. However, Likely suffered a torn ACL as a senior and that caused teams to be weary and he went undrafted this past April. However, the Patriots have always had a supreme eye for talent, so they signed Likely as a free agent.
It’s hard to envision a better landing spot for the Florida native than New England. Coach Bill Belichick has had a knack for turning lesser-known players into stars. Most recently, cornerback Malcolm Butler had the game-sealing interception in the Super Bowl against the Seattle Seahawks. Butler went undrafted out of West Alabama, but helped bring a title to Foxboro. Likely could make an impact very early on as the Patriots secondary doesn’t have a ton of depth behind starters Butler and Stephon Gilmore. At the very least, Likely could double as a return man and take some of the pressure off of Julian Edelman and Dion Lewis. Maryland fans can certainly expect to see Likely on the field on Sundays this fall in some capacity.