NEPD Staff Writer: Dan Hope
As a result of four compensatory selections, the Patriots had five picks in the final two rounds of the 2010 NFL draft. But with the exception of defensive lineman Brandon Deaderick, the No. 247 overall pick, the other four late-round picks never found a long-term role on the Patriots roster.
The lone non-compensatory selection of the five, No. 208 overall selection Thomas Welch out of Vanderbilt, was active for three games as a backup offensive lineman during the 2011 selection. The other three — North Carolina State center Ted Larsen (No. 205 overall), Georgia defensive tackle Kade Weston (No. 248) and Oklahoma State quarterback Zac Robinson (No. 250) — never made the Patriots’ 53-man roster.
The Patriots may have missed an opportunity with Larsen: though they did not have a roster spot for him in the 2010 season, he has gone on to become a starting center with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Weston and Robinson, their final two picks of the 2010 season, have never played an NFL game.
Getting virtually no production from four of their last five picks in 2010 certainly is not ideal, but it is would not really be fair to knock them for it three years later.
The Patriots came away from that draft with four very good starters and one of the league’s better punters. All of those five picks came outside of the top 200. Of the 55 picks outside the 2010 NFL draft, only 17 made it to their third season with the team that drafted them.
While the Patriots are known for finding hidden gems late in the draft, the success percentage of their five picks (20 percent) is not drastically lower than that of the entire league from the final 55 picks of the 2010 draft (30.9 percent).
Overall, the Patriots ended up with one solid rotational player and occasional starter in Deaderick, but were unable to find contributors to their team with their final four picks, which gives them a subpar late-round selections grade.