April 20th New England Patriots Mock Draft (Matthew Jones)

Arkansas tight end Chris Gragg would be an ideal reserve behind Aaron Hernandez at the “F” tight end position. (Photo: US Presswire)

NEPD Editor: Matthew Jones

With the 2013 NFL Draft less than one week away, it’s time to take another look at which prospects the New England Patriots may consider with each of their five selections. Player availability at each pick is determined by the rankings provided by FRX.

1.29. CB Jamar Taylor, Boise St. (FRX: #41 overall prospect, $889)

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has historically leaned towards cornerbacks with superior measurables, especially emphasizing the 40-yard dash and three-cone drill. Jamar Taylor, a senior cornerback from Boise St., has an ideal combination of measurables in those two categories, having recorded a 4.37-second 40-yard dash and 6.82-second three-cone drill at the NFL Combine. Plenty of teams in the last first round have been looking into him, which means he is likely to be selected on the draft’s first day.

2.59. WR Markus Wheaton, Oregon St. (FRX: #74 overall prospect, $576)

This pick could very well be a toss-up between a wide receiver such as Wheaton and a cornerback such as Connecticut’s Blidi Wreh-Wilson; in this case, Wheaton gets the slight edge because of New England’s heavy pre-draft emphasis on the wide receiver position. A legitimate burner, Wheaton would add another dimension to New England’s offense; he can also contribute on reverses, in the slot, and down the sidelines, where his body control is excellent. His ability to gain yards after the catch should appeal to the Patriots.

3.91. DE John Simon, Ohio St. (FRX: #105 overall prospect, $469)

Defensive tackle/defensive end ‘tweeners Jermaine Cunningham and Brandon Deaderick are average reserves at best, and with both entering the final years of their contracts, New England could be looking for a younger replacement. John Simon played both defensive tackle and defensive end at Ohio St., and although he lacks elite measurables, he has been well-coached by Urban Meyer and Mike Vrabel, both coaches Bill Belichick highly respects. Simon could end up having a career similar to Tennessee Titans lineman Karl Klug.

7. TE Chris Gragg, Arkansas (FRX: #174 overall prospect, $425)

Gragg could certainly go much higher than this on draft day thanks to his elite athleticism, but is coming off of an injury-plagued, disappointing senior season which has undoubtedly hurt his draft stock. The Patriots are well-stocked at tight end, but could still use a backup to Aaron Hernandez; when Hernandez missed time last season, New England was forced to reconfigure its offense to account for his absence. Reserves Jake Ballard, Daniel Fells, and Michael Hoomanawanui are more similar to Rob Gronkowski in their style of play.

7. DT Kapron Lewis-Moore, Notre Dame (FRX: #174 overall prospect, $425)

Drafting an injured prospect such as Kapron Lewis-Moore in the seventh round would be a wise idea for New England, as their roster is so deep that a seventh-round draft choice may possess little hope of making the organization’s final 53-man roster. Lewis-Moore, on the other hand, tore his ACL in the BCS Championship Game and could likely be stashed on the Physically Unable to Perform list to begin the season, offering him additional recovery time, as well as a chance to familiarize himself with New England’s defensive scheme.

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9 Responses to “April 20th New England Patriots Mock Draft (Matthew Jones)”

  1. AM says:

    Taylor and Wheaton are outstanding picks–I’d be very happy with those selections. Simon, though, doesn’t seem particularly special to me; he’s like a poor man’s Mike Vrabel, whom the Patriots already have in Rob Ninkovich. I would rather see another selection at WR (Aaron Dobson if available, or perhaps Chris Harper), or maybe a coverage linebacker like Zavier Gooden (a little early for him, but not too much of a reach).

  2. MaineMan says:

    At #29, I’d prefer (in order):
    – Wheaton
    – Taylor
    – Jones
    – Jesse Williams

    Taylor and Jones will very likely be gone by #29, probably Wheaton as well. Williams might still be there, but he also may slide into the 2nd.

    If the first three are off the board, I’d probably trade down, if at all possible, into the relatively early 2nd (hopefully, picking up a 4th in the process).

    Alternatives in the 2nd:
    CB – Banks or Poyer
    DT – Williams (assuming he falls)
    WR – Keenan Allen (assuming his medical checks out and that BB is willing to PUP him)

    CB – Commings, Webster or Gratz
    WR – Boyce, Swope, Stills, or Goodman
    TE – MacDonald
    SAF – Josh Evans
    OL – Dallas Thomas or Terron Armstead

    Later (flyers, UDFA):
    TE – Kelce or Mike Williams
    SAF – Earl Wolff
    WR – Nwachukwu, TJ Moe, Charles Johnson, Gardner, Goard, Monahan
    CB – Mathieu
    RB – Lattimore, Zach Line
    DT – Jordan Hill, Josh Boyd, Montori Hughes
    DE – David Bass, Mike Catapano

  3. STEVEN says:

    Intrigued by this draft. Love Taylor n Wheaton. Just dont understand facination with Simon, except this…..trade Brandon Spikes for extra pics. Transform Simon to ILB( backing up Fletcher). Use picks on WR(Dobson) n passrushing DE(Washington). No need to waste picks on TE. Pats have quantity n quality on roster already. Pick Lewis will be a stud when healthy.

  4. Trevor M. says:

    I’m confused, are you suggesting that the Belichick might double-dip on cornerback (Taylor & Wreh-Wilson)? Only because you said that with pick #59 it’s a toss up with Wreh-Wilson or Wheaton.

    Anyway, I think Wreh-Wilson or Taylor would be awesome CB additions and both would make the blow of losing Talib next off-season (if it happens) a lot easier and cheaper.

    Wheaton is definitely going to be electric in the NFL and only hope it is with the Patriots. I still would like to see a big WR added to the corp, such as Dobson. Maybe big & tall WR are overrated but I think the offense could use a legit redzone threat in the form of a WR as opposed to the All-Mighty Gronk or TEParty.

  5. Eric says:

    Hayden and Wheaton? That’d be tremendous.

    • Eric says:

      Rather, Taylor and Wheaton. And Simon too. He’d be a good Ninkovich clone.

      • Trevor M. says:

        Hayden would be incredible but his stock is rising fast, very fast.

      • cc says:

        Yeah, set your sites on a Nink clone?
        How about a Willie McGiness clone-YES!
        Why go for sub-par & cituational?

  6. cc says:

    Completely disagree regarding any previous “injury plagued” type season. Your TE picks gotta go & so does your DT pick.

    I’ll take Jamar Taylor with a late first if the boys think he’ll be unavailable after that-O.K..

    But use the second on an OLB/DE like Alex Okafor, get rid of Jermaine Cunningham ASAP. Better yet, toss Cunningham’s tail side in with a needed Mallet trade!
    Maybe even a Nice core DT piece like a k.short? But no WR drafting until the 3rd round.

    ***Better of with a third round Wide Out now. A core type guy. Next year go for a “Moss like Burner”.

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