Pats, B's, Sox
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Sacshe, TX (by way of Salem,NH)
Patriots Off-Season Review - Draft Edition - Offense
Potential Draftees are players who have been mentioned as potential picks for the Patriots. They are NOT necessarily my picks. Check out the Draft forum for more info.
QB - Brady, O’Connell, Gutierrez- Tom Brady is the man, but he’s coming back off an ACL/MCL tear. He’ll be wearing a brace more than likely this season so his mobility will be tested.
O’Connell was the Pats 3rd round pick in 2008. He played fairly well in Training camp and many people thought that his being drafted spelled the end for Cassel. However, the Pats coaching staff cut Gutierrez instead. Gutierrez was brought back to serve as the 3rd QB when Brady went down during week 1.
I had thought that the Patriots might sign a veteran, but there isn't really anyone left anymore for them to sign.
Potential Draftees: Mike Reilly, Brad Hoyer, Pat White
RB – Laurence Maroney, Kevin Faulk, Sammie Morris, Fred Taylor, BenJarvus Gren-Ellis– There are definitely questions about this group. How is Maroney’s shoulder and can he stay healthy all year? Is this the year that Faulk breaks down? Can Morris go the whole year without injury? Was the success of “LAWFIRM” the result of the O-line getting its schtick together or is he the real deal that can be a true #3 RB behind a primary and a 3rd down back. How much does Taylor have left in the tank.
The Patriots could use a draft pick to grab a running back, but the addition of Taylor makes this less likely unless the Pats decide to shed Faulk or Maroney on draft day. And if they do that, then the question would be what type of RB do they add? A scat-back like Faulk who can play out of the back-field? A north/south runner to take over the #1 duties so that Maroney can be a complimentary back?
Potential Draftees: Knowshown Moreno, Shonne Green, Donald Brown, Andre Brown, Ian Johnson
FB – NONE – I think this is the first time since BB’s 1st year as HC of the Patriots that they didn’t have a FB on the roster going into the off-season. [
I’d love to see BB pick up a FB in the mold of a Lousaka Polite. Someone who can actually be a bruising, short-yardage back, while also being a bruising, lead blocker. However, if the Patriots are lining up in the spread, more often than not, then it's much less likely that the Patriots will draft one or even add one as a UDFA. The problem with this is that it would then telegraph when the Patriots were going for it on short yardage more so than it does now.
Brian Toal could be another Lousako Polite, but he can't seem to stay healthy.
Potential Draftees: Quinn Johnson, Brian Toal,
O-Line – Matt Light, Nick Kaczur, Logan Mankins, Dan Koppen, Stephen Neal, Billy Yates, Ryan O’Callaghan, Dan Connolly, Ryan Wendell, Mark LaVoir , Al Johnson, Damane Duckett, Wesley Britt, Russ Hochstein- This was a tale of two O-lines this year. For the 1st 5 games, we didn’t know which O-line would show up. The O-line from 2007 that was amongst the best in the league, or the horribly inconsistent O-line of the 2008 pre-season that made all of our QBs look horrible. More often than not, it was the latter. Then Stephen Neal returned from injury and the attitude of the O-line changed. It was almost palpable. The Pats need to add a C/G who is similar to Neal in his nastiness and who can take over when Neal is a UFA after the 2009 season. Mankins could also be a UFA after this season if the CBA situation is cleared up.
Potential Draftees: Max Unger, Eric Woods, Jonathan Luigs, , Alex Mack, William Beatty, Michael Oher, Andy Levitre, T.J. Lang, Trevor Canfield, Jamon Meredith, Gerald Cadogan, Sebastian Vollmer, Lydon Murtha
TE –Chris Baker, Ben Watson, David Thomas, Tyson DeVree, Brad Listori – Watson and Thomas were extremely inconsistent this year, both in blocking and in pass catching.. And the Pats seem to have knocked the TE spot down A LOT in terms of their place in the offense. The Pats upgraded the TE spot by adding Chris Baker and he is clearly the #1 TE right now. Watson and Thomas both are in contract years, though both could be RFA's depending on the CBA situation. There has been a LOT of talk of the Pats drafting a TE this year, but I don't see it.
Potential Draftees: Brandon Pettirgrew, Cornelius Ingram, Bear Pascoe, James Casey, Shawn Nelson, Chase Coffman, Jared Cook, Travis Beckham, Richard Quinn
WR- Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Joey Galloway, Greg Lewis, Sam Aiken, Ray Ventrone, Matt Slater
Moss and Welker are, arguably, the best WR tandem in the league. As expected the Pats addressed the WR need during free agency by adding Joey Galloway and Greg Lewis. Galloway, at 37, still has the speed and hands to be a deep threat, yet he also excels at the intermediate routes. Lewis just never seemed to come into his own in Philly. He'll be competing with Aiken for Washington's place on Special teams.
Even with the additions of Galloway and Lewis, I expect the Patriots to be looking at a WR in this draft because of the plethora of talent in the middle rounds. Guys like Mike Wallace, Aaron Kelly, and Austin Collie, just to name a few. And that doesn't touch on the talent at the top end of the draft who could fall into the 2nd and possibly 3rd rounds.
Potential Draftees: Hakeen Nicks, Percy Harvin, Darrius Heyward-Bay, Aaron Kelly, Mike Wallace, Brian Robiskie, Kenny Britt, Mike Thomas, Jarrett Dillard, Austin Collie, Johnnie Knox, Deon Butler, Dequan Underwood