Open Thread: 2011 NFL Draft Sleepers

Will Rackley

One of these two players going at it during a Shrine Game practice is one of our top sleepers for the 2011 NFL Draft.

Anyone can look at a prospect like AJ Green or Patrick Peterson and see that they are going to be fine NFL players in the coming years.

Part of the fun of the NFL Draft process is finding those prospects that might have some rough edges that need smoothed out, but still could contribute to an NFL team.

Every fan has “their guy”, often a player that is from a local college that has developed before their eyes into an intriguing prospect. We’d like you to share those guys with your fellow Patriots fans here.

We’ll start things off with three quick hits on some late-round prospects or undrafted free-agents that might surprise some teams come August.

Will Rackley, OL, Lehigh – If you listened to our latest NEPD Radio segment, you heard this Lehigh prospect talked up pretty well. Probably a convert from OT to OG at the next level, good be a steal in the mid-rounds.

Karl Klug, DL, Iowa – He is going to be a hard guy to find a position for, but he is too good of a football player not to find a spot somewhere. Very undersized (6-3/270), but goes toe-to-toe with much bigger guys. Could even transition to OLB, although he played DT at Iowa.

Dain Taylor, DE/OLB, Drake – Probably our favorite “sleeper”, Taylor has that suddenness off the edge that the Patriots have been lacking. Could be a special player within a couple of years – we see him as a poor-man’s Ryan Kerrigan right now. Taylor should be available in the 6th or 7th round.


14 Responses to “Open Thread: 2011 NFL Draft Sleepers”

  1. CC says:

    Excuse me, the (2) 3rd rounders + the 4th 5th and 6th = 446 on the chart and gives us Pick number 14 in the 2nd. WOOP’s…….

    **STILL SAME (2) 1st rounders.
    **STILL SAME (2) 2nd rounder’s.

    and adding the #14 pick in round two.

  2. CC says:

    No, i’m saying We have enough value type player’s already.
    What’s the use having all these value type player’s if you don’t start dropping playmakers inbetween them…..
    We are so missing and loosing way too much to bother with this lower rung stuff. without even mentioning the word “INJURY”.

    I’m saying forget all this 5th, 6th & 7th round “crap”.
    We have 1 compensatory in the 6th and 3 compensatory in the 7th if I’m correct. They-are non tradable. Fine use them.
    But the lower rung stuff we have that’s not compensatory…….. Get rid of and make something happen!

    BB has a historic bust rate in the third round as a whole. Only Ellis Hobb’s and Kazur have ever seen starting play in the nfl as a BB 3rd round pick.
    The rest equate at best for playing in what? maybe in 25 games total for all of them, and that’s combined!!……..”Usless” and what we don’t need now that’s for sure. AMEN.

    Both our third rounders equate for 352 in trade worth on the board. +/or – of course.
    352 for the (2) 3rd rounders equates to pick “#22” in the 2nd round!
    + or – of course.
    But from the get go, that’s 3 pick’s in the 2nd being #22 added on now.

    If the bust rate is usual….which it is in the 3rd…..GONE. BYE-BYE.
    If you want to add in nothing players in with it to make it enticing + a pick with it, it goes up from gaining the #22 in the 2nd to who know’s how high……

    *Example; Both 3rd rounders + the 5th and 6th lower teir back-end pick’s will give us Pick # 19 in the 2nd round, as well as having the 1st and 28th as we already do……
    *Just an example, with specifically not using OR moving either of the 2 current 1st or 2nd rounder’s we already have…..
    HECK FOR THAT MATTER PACKAGE EM ALL, (2)3RD’s, the 4TH, 5TH, & 6TH…..That’s the dang 18th pick in round one!!!
    ****Anything wrong with having 3 different first rounders @ # 17, #18 and #28???
    Following up with “still having” the #1 and #28th in round number two??
    I’m thinking not worry about what’s left and what may fall, and TAKE IT!

    Bottom line is we have enough “VALUE” players already. We need starter’s now. Proven talent that will without question be impact now player’s and without question by next year all the tweek’s are worked out.

    I say don’t bother with any of the lower rung stuff, any of it.

    Three 1st rounder’s and two 2nd rounder’s sound damn good to me!

    The compensatory pick’s can be used for practice squad guy’s and temp. injury replacment’s.


  3. Tommy says:

    Sam Acho could develop into something in a few years.

  4. Sean says:

    WR Kris Durham Georgia would be a good UDFA pickup. 6-5/212 started for A.J. Green last year during his suspension. 20.6 yd avg last year and is a deep threat.

  5. Mike Perrone says:

    There should be a lot of value in later round or undrafted running backs. Some examples are Eastern Washington’s Taiwan Jones, UTEP’s Donald Buckrum, USC’s Allen Bradford, and Clemson’s Jamie Harper all have starting potential.

  6. Ian says:

    I like Kelvin Sheppard from LSU. I just think he will have a solid NFL career for being a “safe” third or forth round pick. Will be a good linebacker and special teams player at the next level. I attached a excerpt from a article after LSU’s bowl game.

    Ever since stepping in as a part-time starter in 2008, the Stone Mountain, Ga., native has evolved as a leader. First, with his willingness to go all out on special teams, then as the heart of an improved defense last season and finally as the unquestioned team leader — not just defense — this fall after he opted to return for a fifth season.

    “He knows this program like nobody else,” junior cornerback Patrick Peterson said. “He’s been around this team for five years. He’s a tremendous leader — like the Peyton Manning of our defense. He knows what everybody is supposed to do and where everybody needs to be on the field.”

  7. JimC says:


    The moral of this thread is to understand that there is talent in the NFL draft beyond the allotted 7 rounds. These players (Rackley, Klug and Taylor) may not even get drafted but that doesn’t mean they won’t help some team if they are picked up as free agents.

    Your term playmaker puzzles me. So you are saying that only 1st round talent are playmakers? Welker, BJGE and Woodhead were considered “Walmart” players and look how they help the Pats.

    • Ryan says:

      I agree with JimC:
      If that were the case then why have the draft past the first 24 picks (that is the amount of picks this year that received first round grades). As I believe the draft is all about picking players you think are going to help your team. Its all a gamble no matter the round. It isn’t unheard of to take a player in the 6th or 7th round and have him start or be a facinating player (tom brady).

  8. Bruschi54 says:

    I think that there are several players that are not mentioned in the top 3 or 4 rounds of any mock drafts that are going to be really good football players. Austin Pettis is still low on many draft boards, but a name that most people know. He may end up being the best WR in this draft after AJ Green, when people look back 2-3 years from now. Some others that I think are great values later in draft;
    Zane Parr DE/Virginia
    Tim Barnes C/Missouri
    Tom Keiser OLB/Stanford
    Lawrence Guy DT/Arizona
    Darius Morris OT/Temple
    Jaiquawn Jarrett S/Temple
    Jah Reid OT/Univ Central Florida
    Jake Laptad OLB/Kansas
    Tyler Sash S/Iowa
    Chris White & KJ Wright LB’s/Mississippi State

  9. PatsFan401 says:

    Im sure they arent sleepers but Rodney Hudson & John Moffitt

  10. CC says:

    Love that *”could be a special player in a couple of year’s”…………..?
    In other word’s…….he’s Brandon tate……….
    I think my limit with definitions like that/him have reached my limit.

    “He’s such a great deal i swear”……”a Total value”.

    Hey, Isn’t the “Value Brand” the one you can pick up at wal-Mart??????

    Hmmm’, come to think of it….the color’s even match, blue and white…….
    Yah’, I think it’s time for BB to stop shopping at wal-mart for roster spot’s!!!

    No thank you. I’ll take playmeker’s only this year.
    Rackley and Klug & the injured ankle wanna’ be mankin’s will be around for our compensatory pick’s?

    • NEPD says:

      I’ll take playmakers only this year.

      You have pretty high standards for 7th round picks. Taylor would be an excellent practice squad guy.

  11. Ken says:

    I like Andrew Jackson OG out of Fresno State. Pat Hill product, mentally tough, stock dropped due to high ankle sprain last year. Academic All American, 6’5″ 305. Hill compares him to Logan Mankins and he should know.

  12. Harry says:

    Tandon Doss, Wr, Indiana

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