2013 NFL Draft: Way Too Early Draft Grades

Aaron Dobson Patriots

What grade did new Patriots receiver Aaron Dobson earn?

NEPD Staff Writer: Tony Santorsa

In a draft that the New England Patriots entered with only five draft picks, Bill Belichick traded away the team’s first round pick and picked up four picks along the way—so the team ended with seven draft picks spread across the board.

Little to no surprise, New England traded out of the first round, but have two picks in the second and third round, as well as one in the fourth and two in the seventh.

With that being said, let’s take a look at our way too early draft grades for the Patriots.

2nd Round (#52 Overall): Jamie Collins, OLB, Southern Miss

This is the ultimate boom-or-bust pick. Jamie Collins has all the talent and upside to be a productive pass-rusher at the NFL level, but he’s rather undersized as he stands in at 6’3″ and 250 pounds.

Collins runs a 4.6 forty and has an impressive vertical at 41″ and racked up 10 sacks this past season at Southern Miss. However, Collins played for a very bad team while at Southern Miss, as the team posted a putrid win-less 2012 campaign.

I like to compare Collins to the likes of Bruce Irvin of the Seattle Seahawks—so expect to see Collins play a lot on third-downs this upcoming season.

Grade: B+

2nd Round (#59 Overall): Aaron Dobson, WR, Marshall

Aaron Dobson’s claim to fame was his remarkable one-handed catch this past season but there’s obviously much more to his game.

Dobson recorded 57 receptions for 679 yards this past season for Thundering Herd and proved that he has the potential to be an effective X receiver at the NFL level.

My biggest concern is whether or not Dobson has the brain to learn New England’s rather complex passing attack—however, he certainly does have the talent to succeed with Tom Brady.

Grade: B


3rd Round (#83 Overall): Logan Ryan, CB, Rutgers

The first of three Rutgers Scarlet Knights that Bill Belichick selected: Logan Ryan.

With the way that the third round was going, I really like the selection of Ryan—as cornerbacks was flying like crazy and he was one of the last impressive prospects at the cornerback position on the board.

Ryan will start 2013 as a backup behind Aqib Talib and Alfonzo Dennard and should see the field during his rookie campaign. As well as playing cornerback, Ryan was a serviceable special teams player while at Rutgers and should find a role on New England’s special teams this upcoming season.

Grade: B+

3rd Round (#91 Overall): Duron Harmon, SS, Rutgers

I have nothing against Duron Harmon, but he has no business being drafted in the third round of the NFL Draft.

Yes, I do believe Harmon is a serviceable player but I find it extremely foolish that Belichick wasted a third round pick on this guy.

Harmon was one of Rutgers’ many defensive leaders a year ago and projects as a hard-hitting safety at the NFL-level, but more than anything, I look at him as a special teamer.

Grade: D-

4th Round (#102 Overall): Josh Boyce, WR, TCU

The selection of Josh Boyce is my favorite pick of them all for the Patriots.

Boyce stand sin at 6’0″ and weighs a solid 205 pounds and should bring some physicality to New England’s wide receiver corps—as he’s great in jump balls as well as being a guy that can break tackles against “pencil-neck” cornerbacks.

Boyce recorded 66 receptions for 891 yards and seven touchdowns this past season for the Horned Frogs while averaging an impressive 13.5 yards per-reception.

As long as Boyce can learn New England’s offensive playbook, he should fit in just fine with Tom Brady and New England’s other receivers.

Grade: B

7th Round (#226 Overall): Michael Buchanan, DE/OLB, Illinois

Michael Buchanan played for the same coach that coached DeMarcus Ware and that’s certainly a positive.

Buchanan played the “Bandit” position while at Illinois as he wasn’t just your typical speed pass-rusher, but he was also responsible for setting the edge.

Buchanan recorded 4.5 sacks and 7.5 tackles for a loss in 2012 while recording 7.5 sacks and 13.5 tackles in 2011—so the production is there.

For a seventh round pick, this pick has a ton of value to it.

Grade: B+

7th Round (#235 Overall): Steve Beauharnais, LB, Rutgers

The third and final Rutgers prospect that New England selected: Steve Beauharnais.

Ultimately, Beauharnais is nothing more than a reliable and durable linebacker. He doesn’t bring anything special to the table, much like other seventh round picks, but he’s average at just about every phase of the game for a linebacker.

It’s a 50/50 shot if Beauharnais will make New England’s final roster, but I’d bet that he’ll make New England’s practice squad.

Grade: C

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13 Responses to “2013 NFL Draft: Way Too Early Draft Grades”

  1. BigCat says:

    Typical Belichick draft. He has such a simple philosophy. Keep us under the salary cap and let Brady figure it out with whatever is left over. And oh yeah give me all the credit.
    It must be nice to have a Tom Brady where u can just bring in anyone and have a top 5 offense. Brady has shown he can throw deep, he has shown he can manage a running game and now he’s become a dink and dunker. Two Te’s no problem. He continues to make Belichick and slow talking Kraft look like they are actually smarter than the rest of the NFL.
    Belichick gets and takes all the credit. But all he does is draft defense and stay under the cap. They will screw over Brady in the end just like they have everyone else. Leadership Bill is not always about doing things right it also includes doing the right thing.
    Brady has been a very loyal supporter of your ignorance when it comes to bringing in players, pay him back!
    U had the pick of the litter with Wideouts this yr and what do u do; Drop down and u still have everyone except Hopkins to choose from and u still wont throw Brady a crumb. There were several free agents Wr’s as well but no bite from NE.
    When Brady retires we will all look back and say: Why didnt Bill get Brady a big time receiver or at least a stud RB like all the other teams did for their superstars. And this doesnt just include football. Never has a superstar been treated this way in the history of sports.
    Bill if u want to get my respect put a top 10 defense on the field, after all thats your legacy and where all the new england money goes. U cant even do that. Brady takes the 31st rank defense to the SB and almost wins the dang thing. That will never be duplicated.

    He is an above average coach, I will give him that, but thats all I will give him. Can u guys imagine if Brady wouldve had a Jerry Rice or even a Terrell Davis how many Super Bowls New England could have won? How about just a Julio Jones at least.
    look at what the Packers do for Rodgers
    What ATl does for Ryan
    Both Mannings-
    Wilson gets Percfy Harvin wow
    I guarantee when its all said and done everyone will realize just how shitty the Patriots did Brady all of these years. He’s a great one but we will never know how great and how many championships he couldve had with just a little support.

    Take away the spygate years and Brady and this guy would be exposed to what he really is and thats an accountant that spends all his money on defense and still cant field a top 20 defense.

    • cc says:

      Wow, so true actually.
      An associate of mine recently said almost the exact same thing. Then added the likes of:
      So tired of the “Hey, but we’re always a # & # team”.
      “So many other teams would kill 2 always be # & #”.
      Sometimes I would simply rather a pissed of Patriot Alum slip a ? in BB’s and 1/2 the other coaches cheap-douchie drinks so he & they were out for 1/2 the year. Maybe even itching powder in the uniforms for 6 of the seasons weeks, ANTHING 2 cause a catastrophic season, like 2-14 preferably.
      Point being: Maybe then the team could draft some more Willie McGiness’ s? Some more Bruschi’s? Maybe actually toss in a Ty Law or two again. ………
      Weird stuff from a season ticket holder. : |

  2. Alex says:

    So your favourite pick Josh Boyce gets a B. And three other get a B+?

    Also a bit of time spent proof reading wouldn’t go amiss, and maybe some actual research into the picks. Like telling us that Dobson was incredibly football smart when Belichick talked with him, and wowed him with his knowledge, and Boyce had the highest WR Wonderlic at the combine. How they both ran option routes in college. You know, that sort of stuff. I think it’s called reporting…

  3. Russell Easterbrooks says:

    Joe Vallano DT was invited to Patriots mini-camp.

  4. Jim R says:

    Drafted for depth………..They did OK. IF they can get any type of production from Dobson or Boyce, that would be huge. Defenses will not be able to play the 15yd. box from the numbers to the los.
    I really like the Blount trade. He gives them a little more attitude in the running game

  5. td says:

    Looks like BB took the approach of bringing in a bunch of prospects this year via FAgency & draft in areas of need, let them compete and may the best player win. Those areas being: DLine, pass rusher, cover LB and DBack.

    Quite a few of these guys will need to step up just to make the team. Some of last years rooks and the injured will be back at full speed: Fletcher, Bequette, Francis, Forston.

    Also, bet a lot of folks never thought we would have a stable of really good RB’s at this point. Looking forward to seeing what Vereen can do with more touches.

  6. kdog says:

    My grades. . .

    1 (29) – Collins/Ryan/Boyce: A- With true 1st round talent in this draft long gone at #29, BB converts his pick into a freakish LB prospect, a reliable 4th CB, and a decent shot at hitting WR gold.

    2 (59) – Dobson: C+ I like this guy, but WR’s are so hard to project, especially in our system. I guess they liked him better than Patton, Wheaton, and Allen. I have visions of Torrey Smith. .. (lots of) time will tell. . .

    3 (91) – Harmon: B I like it when we grab guys who didn’t go to the combine or make it onto the scouting list. Sometimes they work out. Late in the 3rd round is a fine time to take a shot like this.

    7 (226) – Buchanon: B Interesting pick. Might make the team. Should at least provide competition.

    7 (235) – Beauharnais: A Love this pick. Should make the team, and I think he will contribute from day 1.

    UDFAs – Moe, Stanky, etc. A- Looks like some good possibilities there.

  7. 49ers Fan says:

    Not sure why you like Josh Boyce so much. He’s not overly talented or skilled and when TCU wasn’t performing up to par he had a terrible attitude about it.

  8. Ralph says:

    BB can still draft future Stars (Gronk, Aaron, Jones, Hightower), but the Harmon pick was sort of a “This is my team, my draft, I’ll do what i want” type of pick, I would rather have BB picking for the Pats then any other Coach, but everybody knows Harmon was at best a 5th round prospect, just like Tavon Wilson was, Tavon will never be a starting safety for the Pats.

    • Ryan B says:

      Sounds like Tavon will start at SS and Harmon will take the money roll next season. Never say never.

  9. Ryan B says:

    Agreed, with all of your grades but the last. Beauharnais to me has great if not elite instincts. He was also team leader. He could be a gem. Easily one of the best players on the board, adds protection if they can’t sign Spikes and could help in coverage on third downs.

  10. Henry Carmen says:

    Tavon Wilson was drafted early last year to fill a glaring need as a sub package player. I keep trying to think of play related reasoning for the harmon pick (rather than character). Is it possible that belichick has seen Tavon Wilson mature his game to the point where he will be relied on as the starting strong safety, therefore leaving a need at the very position Tavon was drafted for. Idk, maybe Harmon replaces him in that respect? havent watched any tape but thats all i got.

    • munchkin says:

      Tavon did play a fair number of snaps last season. Gregory was more of a disappointment than Wilson given his paycheck and veteran experience. I would assume we will see much better communication in the secondary given Talib, Dennard, Arington, McCourtey and Gregory/Wilson had the tail end of last season to build on going into TC. If Collins can be an effective wild card along with Jones and Ninkovich the QBs could be forced into making more mental errors.
      Dobson seems like a different player than Price and Tate. He has seen more snaps in the college passing game than either of the other two which should help. This was an important draft. The players may not jump off the page but their contributions will go a long way to making this team competitive in the playoffs. They will need to grow over the course of the season to make this team a serious SB contender.

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