Welcome, Pats fans and draft fans, to PatsFanInVa’s annual draftnik rolling recap, an occasionally informative and even more occasionally entertaining parodic look at the year’s draft from a draftnik point of view. Who is a draftnik? If you hear “Kuiper Belt” on the science channel and turn up the sound because it might be Mel Kiper, you might be a draftnik. If you still cringe at the names Eugene Chung, Hart Lee Dykes, and especially Chris Canty – because we got the bad one – you might be a draftnik. If you ever shouted “He’s not even the best Kenyatta in the draft!” you might be a draftnik. If your pastor said Jesus was mocked, and you said “what round did he go in?” you might be a draftnik. And crucially, if you believe that the stack of overpriced draft guides you picked up at CVS when you were filling your mom’s Gardacil prescription combined with an NFL Network Jones worse than Kenyatta make you better at this than the combined brainpower of Bill Belichick and his minions, you are definitely a draftnik. So now that you know whom I’m speaking for, sit back, relax, shout back at your mom “I’ll be up in a minute,” and enjoy your 2014 rolling draftnik recap! Round 1, pick 29: Dominique Easley, DT, Florida. 6’2”, 288. With Big Vince Wilfork and Tommy Kelly both lost to injury during the 2013 season, it only makes sense to shore up the defensive front with fresh legs. In Easley’s case, fresh injured legs. He’s still a self-reported “80% back” from his second ACL tear, but by September will have a full year of rehab under his unimpressive belt, and will be ready for another injury. We should have drafted Jadeveon Clowney instead. I spent a week on an email to Bill Belichick explaining how to do it, using draft value charts, known facts about why Houston would want to take less than the pick was worth, the rest of this draft and half of the next, and Ryan Mallett. Once again, Bill made the mistake of not heeding my advice. Easley’s billed as the next-best thing, an explosive, disruptive tackle who’s just as comfortable playing defensive end. He’s got a first step faster than any offensive lineman’s, and they know when the snap’s coming. Also, he’s got a step before that. By the first step of a quarterback’s drop he’s already given an O-lineman three titty twisters and a purple nurple, and he’ll likely be in the backfield by the third. Double-team him on a run play, and that just means he’ll drive a guard and a center (or tackle) into the ball-carrier. The quickest 288 pounds you’ll ever see, when healthy. Which is never. And did I mention he’s got the wingspan of a half-grown T-Rex? That never mattered in the college ranks, when he took up permanent residence in his opponents’ backfields. But I’ve seen an infographic on how undersized he is, and have decided this will be the death of his pro career. Pats draftnik grade: C. Round 2, pick 62: Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois. 6’2”, 226. I couldn’t hear myself preemptively booing this pick over the JEST fans booing Willy McGinest. I did love that he got snarky with them, but my delight was short-lived once the pick was announced. Then I figured out why I was booing preemptively, and here it is. Precognition is contagious. First we pick a guy who knows about the snap before the center who snapped the ball, then we got the guy who releases the ball before his arm is back. And sideways, at that. So it’s just natural that I knew this pick would suck before it was made. Let’s start with the three-quarters delivery. Tom Brady doesn’t throw side-arm. Hell, Drew Bledsoe didn’t throw side-arm. You know who throws side-arm? Philip “Crimea” Rivers. (And if you’re sick of the name jokes just be glad we didn’t move up to pick Ha ha Clinton Dix, whose name will therefore be mercifully relegated to the political forum.) And that’s the upside. The downside is Tim Tebow. And I didn’t like that movie the first time I saw it. So naturally he learned to get the ball out lightning-fast, because people kept slapping it down. He got good at it, he impressed the credulous New England Patriots scouting staff (which by the way, is the worst scouting staff in the league except for everybody else’s,) he set a few records, blah blah blah. Then he lit up the Senior Bowl for 6 of 12 and 32 yards. See, that’s because Jimmy Garoppolo, your New England Patriots quarterback of the future, played for Eastern Illinois University. So he never got to play against the only guy faster than his release, even when said guy was healthy, because that guy played for Florida. He did get to play against the Gamecocks every year. Not the marginally relevant South Carolina Gamecocks, mind you, the Jacksonville State Gamecocks. He also got to battle it out with the Huskies (Northern Illinois,) the Salukis (Southern Illinois,) and both the Redhawks and the Skyhawks, and who the hell cares where they’re from. None of them were any good. It’s the Ohio Valley Conference, for the love of God. So, he got away with a delivery that would make a Japanese pitching coach nervous. But he makes up for it with his athleticism and escapability. Feels pressure well, regardless of whether it’s there. Makes great decisions, throws receivers open, which will be great once we have some receivers again. Overall, it looks like the Pats have seen the future… sideways. Quick release, quick reads, and feet so pretty Rex Ryan is offering the JESTs’ 2015 second rounder for a JPEG. Pats draftnik grade: B-. Edits in progress nightly.