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Are the Pats Really Going to go LB or Safety Early?

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by Wretch, Apr 2, 2009.

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  1. Wretch

    Wretch Rookie

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    I have been thinking a lot about the draft recently and though most people are expecting the Pats to take an OLB with their first round pick and consider safety a need because of the loss of Rodney.

    First to state the obvious no one except BB knows what BB thinks and the rest of us are just guessing.

    Based on what we read and hear about BB’s appreciation for James Sanders and the fact that the Pats signed Sanders to a contract extension I think it is unlikely that BB is looking to replace Sanders with an early pick. Also I think Rodney’s short term replacement is already on the team and his name is Tank Williams or, if you like, Gary Guyton, serves that role as the coverage linebacker/safety.

    I don’t think BB would have traded Vrabel if he didn't think that players on the roster could replace him. Redd, Crable and Woods are the players that I think will serve as Vrabel’s replacement. Plus a lot was made last year of Guyton’s ability to play all 4 LB spots.

    Because of these guesses on my part about BB’s thinking I find it more likely that BB will pick up OL or DL help early to eventually replace Kazcur, Neal, or Seymour.

    Thoughts?
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2009
  2. Feep50

    Feep50 Rookie

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    Well thought out post. I haven't read any posts clamoring for a Safety at #23, or before our second pick in the second (#47)...

    When you have 4 picks and the first 58 it's human nature to project picks into what most here perceive as a need......

    I'm as guilty as anyone else.... I dream of a SS that knocks people into another time zone with #47..... Hellooooooooooo Patrick Chung! :cool:
  3. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think that this is a fine analysis, which means that I agree with most of it. Belichick may indeed think that he is fine for 2009 at both OLB and safety.

    I do believe that Tank's health is an issue, but we are talking about the possible need to upgrade a backup. Also I would note that Springs is our backup free safety. Spann performed resaonably in that role last year and is still on the roster.

    All this being said, we need to develop future strength at LB. We have lost Vrabel. We will likely lose Bruschi after 2009. And perhaps we should even be looking two or three years in the future for the replacement for Thomas. More immediately, Woods and Banta-Cain will be free agents next year, and Crable is by no means a sure thing as a 2010 starter.

    Also, I think that you are overstating Guyton's versatility. He is a fine prospect at ILB. He is not an OLB by any stretch.

    So, I do believe that we need Day One help at linebacker.

    DRAFTING HIGH AT DE AND GUARD
    ----------------------------------
    I agree that we should draft a DE in our first two picks, as an expected 2010 replacement of either Green or Seymour.

    I agree that we need a backup guard to possibly replace Neal in 2010, although a draftee could be valuable as a Game Day backup at all the interior line positions (Hochstein's current role). Mankins and Kaczur are RFA's next year (and will stay) unless there is a new contract. I expect a guard in the 2nd or 3rd, which is fine for a potential 2010 OL need. After all, the patriots have started losts of rookies on the offensive line in the past.

    DRAFTING HIGH AT OT
    I'm fine with drafting Britton to upgrade Kaczur if Britton is available at 23 (and get our DE at 34). Kaczur and LeVoir are both adequate OT's, so this isn't a crucial need for 2009. If Britton isn't there, then the 3rd and 4th rounds provide many opportunities for a RT prospect.

    MY BOTTOM LINE FOR DAY ONE
    I think that it is most likely that we will draft a DE, LB, OG and a S. In the end, safety is the lowest priority. However, it is a need and the value is defintiely there in the second round.

  4. bakes781

    bakes781 Rookie

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    In regards to the LBs, I think it has as much to do with the depth of this year's OLB class than any perceived need. I recall in 2006 their being similar depth at the position, but the Pats passed and selected Maroney and Chad Jackson that year.
  5. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    We have no immediate needs, I could see Tyson Jackson at 1, Donald Brown at 2a, WR at 2b, OL and 2c or whatever. I expect a BPA, within reason, I don't see anywhere that a rookie will be a starter or a more than 50% player.
  6. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    There were a few Linebackers I considered reasonable fits for NE in 2006, but most were in the later rounds. Lawson and Greenway were the two I was interested in, then Chris Gocong in the third. Lawson hasn't don much, Greenway was hampered by missing his rookie season with an injury but is solid, Gocong was a steal for the Iggles. This class of 3-4 OLBs is much deeper, with a couple guys who could reasonably be expected to improve the pass rush more than we've seen out of the kids NE currently has.

    I believe NE is targeting 2-3 of the OLB candidates in the first/second rounds, but they won't break the bank for one.
  7. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I like your thinking about what we will go after.
  8. Liverpool_Patriot

    Liverpool_Patriot Rookie

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    I hope we get Larry English, Jarron Gilbert, William Moore and an OL in the first 2 rounds but don't know what picks we would get them with. I think with 15 - 20 lbs of muscle Jarron Gilbert would eventually replace Seymour but what pick would we have to use on him?
  9. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Hey, when did we start agreeing so much? :p

    My ever-evolving day-1 draft board currently looks like this:

    23: DE Jarron Gilbert
    34: OLB (Barwin the likeliest)
    47: OG/C (Crossing fingers for Eric Wood, might spend a 3rd or 4th to inch up for him)
    58: SS (Moore, Vaughn or Chung)

    That said, I disagree that safety is a low priority. I think the number of strong safeties the Pats have been bringing in reflects need and interest there. I just think the value starts around 47 for that position.
  10. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Our draft boards are indeed coming to be closer and closer as Draft Weekend approaches! I guess we get our OT prospect at 97. I agree that 89 and/or 124 may be needed to trade up. Either could also be traded into 2010, giving us five players in the first four rounds.

    With regard to the need at safety, I guess I just think more of Tank Williams than most. However, I agree with drafting a strong safety at 58, primarily because of injury concerns with Tank.

    We do differ a bit at 34. I'm not at all sure that the linebacker will be a project OLB. I suspect that I have about 10 linebackers higher on my board than Barwin. My gut says that we draft someone who at least has the possibility of playing inside. I certainly prefer Laurinitis, Sintim and Matthews over Barwin; and yes, Maualuga starts to look like a bargain at 34.

  11. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Rookie

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    Naah, BB will shock us all and take a Tight End. :D :D

    Tyson Jackson won't last till pick #23, mark my words.
    I don't want a RB nor a WR that early.
    BPA sure. BPA might just be Barwin at 23. ;)
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2009
  12. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Rookie

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  13. CanadianPat'sFan

    CanadianPat'sFan Rookie

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    I really could see this being the way BB approaches the draft. He has done a great job in FA IMO without Pioli or McDanials to some point and with take the BPA with all of his picks. If he does not take the BPA he will trade to make something move forward to 2010 draft.

    I think he will also have guys that he will like but I am very comfortable with our team but would love to see how Woods, Crable, Wheatly are doing in the offseason to better know what BB might be thinking. OLB is my only question right now going into 2009, I really think that the combo of Bru and Guyton and AD could play with Mayo and control the middle. OLB would then be the position I would like to add to on defense right now for 2009. On offense I would love to see a great WR slip farther then they should and BB scoop them up just like OT.

    That is all I got right now:)
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2009
  14. DW Toys

    DW Toys Rookie

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    Have to disagree with you on that one. FB is not a great need if you eliminate certain plays and install Hochstein but I think you will see BB draft one (Quinn Johnson LSU?) to start in certain formations. Sanders is a decent back-up and upgradeable but lets not rehash that. Contracts and status mean zip to BB.The better player plays. I say a Delmas or Moore will overtake him at some point in the season if drafted. That is the most probable scenario.

    The surprise might be TE and/or RT. We played many games without Watson last season and used a JAG and won. I could see a Petegrew or a Casey that could be used as a weapon instead of an extra tackle that Watson has become.

    The other guy is Merridoth OT from S.C. He can play all OL spots but center. We have sent Dante to scout him personally down there, not here. Something is up there. Kaczur trade? Perhaps Neal is still not rehabbing well even though he played late?
    DW Toys
  15. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree with LB, DE, OL, but actually see another CB (luxury of BPA,looking toward next yr +) and somewhat of a surprise with an offensive player--making it 5 picks out of our first 6, with 1 being traded towards our efforts next yr

    After the 3rd round (4-7) I see another on the D line for depth, and of course a couple of safeties. Added to that is another OL, making it a total of 9 in the draft

    I strongly agree w/ Belichick Fan, and a couple of the others when they say that our 'immediate needs' are much overstated

    If anything, I'd swap one of the Safeties with one of the 1st rd DE/LB, making it Round 1: DE/OLB, S, OT, CB, (WR/RB), and 1 traded pick out of the first 6
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2009
  16. CoachK

    CoachK Rookie

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    This board is enamoured with Jaron Gilbert and seems to want to reach for him way to early.

    IIRC correctly, he didn't exactly dominate the competiton at the college level, and seems to be riding the crest of his combine performance (can you say workout warrior).

    When is the last time we spent a first day pick on someone who didn't have the tape to back up the pick??
  17. DW Toys

    DW Toys Rookie

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    Like to have him, but good point.
    DW Toys
  18. JoeShmoe

    JoeShmoe Rookie

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    I agree totally. I think we go OL first day .. OT and OG

    I wouldn't be at all surprised if we traded down to #29 and selected Mack and then picked up Meredith in the second

    I've said it before but who is the number one player on this team? Who is the player that will win us a SB? Its that player we have to protect and give time too for the 5 or so years he has left
  19. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Not to mention his youtube pool clip.

    I think Gilbert has a lot of athleticism and upside and I like him, but not at #23 and probably not at #34.
  20. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I didn't record any San Jose State games last Fall, but I did have a couple on for background at one time or another and the name "Gilbert" was consistently coming out of the announcer's mouths. Not in and of itself a strong proof of anything, but I note it in conjunction to the listing on this site - http://web1.ncaa.org/mfb/natlRank.jsp?year=2008&div=IA&rpt=IA_playertacklesloss&site=org - and the reports from the East-West Shrine game practices, combine them and that good Combine performance isn't very troubling.
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