NEPD Editor: Doug Kyed
How would I handle the Patriots draft? Who are the best kick returners in this draft? Would the Patriots take Luke Kuechly if he fell to #27?
Those are some of the questions I’ll be answering in my weekly “Too Long For Twitter” Friday mailbag where I take questions from Twitter that warrant, deserve or need answers longer than 140 characters
If you have a question about anything, tweet it to me @DougKyedNEPD, and I’ll try to include it in the column on Friday. If you aren’t on Twitter, feel free to throw in a question in the comments section.
I can’t see a scenario where that happens. I actually think Kirkpatrick probably goes higher than analysts are mocking him. Corners are so important in today’s game that a versatile, rare player like Kirkpatrick should probably be gone top ten.
Kirkpatrick also has a ton of potential at safety, so any team looking at Mark Barron should also be looking at Kirkpatrick if he falls that far. Kirkpatrick is also essentially a perfect fit for what the Seahawks look for in a cornerback, if he falls to #12, I think the Seahawks will have a very hard time passing him up despite how deep they already are at the position.
I like Gilmore and Jenkins a lot, but both aren’t considered top 15 picks for a reason. Gilmore still has a lot of issues to fix in his technique, and I think we all know about Jenkins’ problems at this point.
I guess I would have to be happy because it would certainly be the best player available and it’s great value. I just think that Kuechly is too similar a player to Jerod Mayo. In a 4-3, they’re both WLBs and in a 3-4, they’re both WILBs. Mayo could play MLB or SILB, but Spikes is already so good in those spots that there really wouldn’t be a ton of snaps for all three of them unless there’s injuries.
A guy like Hightower makes far more sense, he can not only play SILB, SLB and MLB, but he can also play SOLB and DE. He’s got a ton of versatility and would be a perfect fit in the Patriots hybrid defense. I think if Hightower is only used as an OLB/DE in the NFL he’ll still have a very productive career, well worth the 27th pick or even a trade up.
I’d also love Jenkins in the first round. I may put more of my thoughts out on the Jenkins scenario later this week, but I’m a big fan of his. Whether you think it was stupidity or bad luck that he got arrested twice, he’s not the only college football player smoking weed and he’s not the only troubled player to enter the NFL. Players like Randy Moss, Warren Sapp, Corey Dillon, etc have all had extremely productive careers despite having major character red flags out of college. Sure, there’s a chance that Jenkins could become Pacman Jones or even Jamarcus Russell, but he’s got a ton of talent and it’s worth the risk at the end of round one, especially when you can double up on a corner later in this deep draft.
Kiper, not only because he’s the better analyst, but also because his hair serves as a protective layer for any blows.