Sorry to pile it on, there have been a lot of these lately.
- Draft a 34DE
- Draft a 34OLB
- Improve the Pass Rush
- Add to the TE position
- Add depth and size to the WR corps
- Add athletic players to the offensive line
- Focus on players capable of playing multiple positions or playing in multiple schemes
- Bring in athletic players with speed
- Add depth to the defensive front 7
- Get better on special teams
Without any trades being done, this is how I would make the selections. I'm throwing this in their because judging whether a trade is feasible or not from the draft chart seems less than accurate so a baseline of the picks I would make seems necessary.
1-22: Jared Odrick DE Penn State
2-12: Ricky Sapp OLB Clemson
2-15: Demaryius Thomas WR Georgia Tech
2-21: Rob Gronkowski TE Arizona
4-21: Selvish Capers OT West Virginia
6-21: Colin Peek TE Alabama
6-XX: Edward Wang OT Virginia Tech
7-21: Zoltan Mesko P Michigan
7-25: Deji Karim RB Southern Illinois
7-XX: Danny Batten LB South Dakota State
7-XX: Jameson Konz TE/FB/LB Kent State
7-XX: Sean Lissimore DL William and Mary
Below is my mock with trades. Below there is an explanation of my logic on each and the link for where I got the values for each selection is found here.
- NE trades 1-22-53 to DAL for 1-27, 3-27, 6-27
- NE trades 2-21-53 and 7-21 to CLE for 3-7 and 3-28
- NE trades 2011 3rd Round Pick to SF for 4-15
The first trade gives DAL the opportunity to move up ahead of GB and take an OT before all the really good ones are off the board. We get another 4th rounder and slide down 5 spots where we should still be able to nab Jared Odrick for a presumably cheaper salary. We give up 51 points worth of draft value but I don't think it's realistic to get DAL to give up 3 picks nor would they sacrifice a 1st and a 3rd to move up 5 spots in the 1st. I flirted with the idea of swapping 1st round picks and picking up their 3rd for our 4th but in this draft I like the idea of more selections.
Trade values: NE gives up 780(1-22) for 680(1-27) and 49(4-27); NE gives up 51 points
The next trade is kind of tricky, in terms of trade values it matches up favorably for CLE but to me it seems like we come out way ahead. We give up our pick in the 2nd(53 overall) and our 7th (roughly 213 with the compensation picks) for 2 of their 3rd round picks. They need talent badly on that team and 2 2nds might go further for them than 3 3rds. I initially wanted Rob Gronkowski with the 53rd but backed off because of injury concerns.
Trade Values: NE gives up 370(2-21) and 6.2(7-21) for 235(3-7) and 132(3-28); NE gives up 9.2 points
This one I'm very skeptical of myself but after researching some draft trades it seems like a fair deal. I couldn't find a value chart for future picks but the 15th selection in the 4th round is worth 72 points.
When all the dealing is done the Pats will have picked up 2 3rds and 2 4ths giving them 8 selections in the first 4 rounds compared to 5 initially.
1-27-27: Jared Odrick DE Penn State 6'5", 304lbs, 5.03
Jared Odrick fills the void of a true 34DE left by the Seymour trade. Jarvis Green was a great situational player but he wasn't by any means a viable starter for this defense and that really showed when Baltimore ran right over him for a TD on the first play of that god awful playoff game. Consistently beat double teams in college. He's not a flashy pick, but he is definitely a smart one. With Mike Wright as the closest thing to a starting DE on the roster, he should start right out of the gate.
2-12-44: Ricky Sapp OLB Clemson 6'4", 252lbs, 4.65
Ricky Sapp has all the measureables of a protoypical 34OLB with the ability to play 3 downs right out the gate provided he is able to learn the system. While its questionable he can set the edge, Rosevelt Colvin (6'3", 250) was a pretty successful player for us with less impressive physical attributes. He should be able to provide a pass rush, but his contributions in that department come with some doubt and it would be wise to further address the pass rush later on.
2-15-47: Demaryius Thomas WR Georgia Tech 6'3", 224lbs, 4.59
Demaryius Thomas is far and away my favorite reciever in this draft despite his flaws as a route-runner and lack of experience in an NFL style offense. His combine 40 time wasn't great but his highlight reels from Youtube and whatnot show very good game speed. He's got all the makings of a top tier WR and with Tom Brady throwing to him we could see some fireworks this year.
3-07-71: Eric Decker WR Minnesota 6'3", 217lbs, 4.54
Eric Decker was a player I wasn't really excited about until his Wonderlic results came out and I took the time to check out his highlight reels. He reminds me of a big Wes Welker. Very physical, doesn't shy away from contact, not afraid to go up for the ball, and is apparently a genius. His 40 times and game speed aren't world breaking and thus he looks like more of a possession reciever. However as a big target running opposite from Moss that can sit in the soft spots of zone coverage and beat smaller CBs physically when 1-on-1, he seems like the perfect addition to the passing game.
3-28-92: Dennis Pitta TE BYU 6'4", 249lbs, 4.59
Dennis Pitta fills the obvious need at TE. He's a good athlete although a little undersized and is an above average blocker and pass catcher. Looks like he plays as a larger version of Dallas Clark with less finesse and more power after the catch. Has experience lining up in the slot in shotgun formations which could help create great mismatches with nickelbacks underneath. And coming from BYU I doubt there will be any character issues.
4-15-XXX: Austen Lane DE/OLB 6'7", 276lbs, 4.84
The addition of Ricky Sapp helps plug the hole at OLB but it may not solve the problems with the pass rush. This team still needs a pass rusher and hopefully Austen Lane will give them what they're missing. With his size and athleticism he should be able to play the Rush LB in 3-4 fronts and the 43DE. He's relatively slow for a OLB so he's going to be strictly limited to pass rush situations but with his size off the edge he could be a nightmare for TEs and a good fight for Ts.
4-21-XXX: Selvish Capers OT West Virginia 6'5", 308lbs, 5.11
Time for the annual draft of an OL in the middle rounds. At 6'5" and a lean 308 he profiles more like a G than a T for the Patriots and that's exactly why I picked him. The interior of the line seems to be in greater need of an overhaul relative to the exterior and the addition of a player with the athleticism of a T playing G could reap big benefits in the run game. The 19 reps on the bench are very worrisome and I think that's going to cause him to drop but over time he should develop better strength.
4-27-XXX: Javier Arenas CB Alabama 5'9", 197lbs, 4.52
This pick signifies a move for depth at the CB position but more importantly gives our special teams a much needed upgrade. I hate our return guys, I don't think that any one of them is dangerous or has any ability to break a return for a big gain and if it did happen there was probably sloppy coverage and great blocking. I hate that Wes Welker was our primary return guy, to me it was a completely unnecessary risk to have him get lit up every now and then because he was the best PR
on the team. This needs to change and Javier Arenas is the solution to the problem. He's the 2nd leading return man in the history of the NCAA (maybe the 1st, I know he had a chance to break the record during the championship game) and while he certainly isn't overly talented as a CB, he's another body to throw out there in nickel and dime situations if necessary. I think his return abilities more than make up for his inadequacies as a DB.
Continued on next post.