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Patriots Select First Kicker In 2020 NFL Draft

A closeup of New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick during a game.

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 21: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on in the second quarter against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on October 21, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

The first specialist of the 2020 NFL Draft is off the board. The Patriots selected Marshall kicker Justin Rohrwasser in the fifth round on Saturday afternoon.

This marks the second year in a row the Patriots have selected a specialist in the draft. Last year, New England drafted its punter, Jake Bailey, in the fifth round as well.

Bill Belichick always tends to surprise people during the draft. Selecting a kicker or punter in the fifth round isn't unheard of, but it's not very common either.

By drafting Rohrwasser, the Patriots are filling a major need after opting to release veteran kicker Stephen Gostkowski this off-season. New England used the 159th overall pick on the former Marshall kicker.

Many believed the Patriots would go after a quarterback in the later rounds, perhaps even Georgia's Jake Fromm. But Fromm is still on the board as his major draft slide continues.

Instead, the Patriots are handing the kicking position over to Rohrwasser. The former Marshall kicker isn't even considered the best kicker prospect in the current draft class by most ranking outlets. But the Patriots clearly see something they like.

It certainly appears Belichick and the Patriots have found a diamond in the rough here.