2014 Patriots Seven-Round Mock Draft: Pre-Free Agency Edition

Bill O’Brien is no longer Penn State’s head coach. But the former Patriots coordinator has left behind prospects that could fit New England’s interests, like No. 91 DaQuan Jones. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

It’s March, and that means things are starting to take shape across the football landscape.

The NFL Scouting Combine closed along with February. The deadline for teams to use the franchise tag passed Monday, March 11 at 4 p.m. ET. The door to unrestricted free agency opens March 11. And college pro days are starting up as spring draws near.

Boxes are being checked, but the 2014 NFL draft is still over two months away.

In other words, there are a lot of moving pieces in play. Much will hinge on the next couple of weeks. And like all 31 other organizations, the same is true for head coach Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.

Veteran safety Steve Gregory has been released, trade discussions have been floated around, and there is variability when it comes to New England’s salary cap.

Who will be re-signed, who will restructure, who will depart – it’s hard to say at this moment.  Yet if the war room was set and the Radio City Music Hall festivities were tomorrow, how might it all unfold for the Patriots?

Here is a pre-free agency seven-round mock draft scenario, with trades and compensatory picks included.

  • New England currently holds seven picks. Yet when accounting for compensatory selections, that could translate in two sixth-rounders for safety Patrick Chung and offensive guard Donald Thomas, and potentially an additional seventh-rounder for halfback Danny Woodhead.

Round 1, Pick 29 – Traded to Jacksonville Jaguars

The depth in this year’s class is beneficial for a team like New England, as quality players will be available later on each round, and consequently, later on in the draft. NEPatriotsDraft editor Mike Loyko further explained this sentiment on Twitter, opining that teams will be finding third-round talent well into the fifth round.

Due to this, it’s entirely possible that Belichick, director of player personnel Nick Caserio and Co. decide to move out of Day 1. The drop-off between the top-32 picks and the top-40 picks isn’t as significant as it may seem. And accruing selections to minimize risk has been New England’s method of operation before.

It is once again, in this case, as the Patriots trade the 29th overall pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars in exchange for the 39th overall pick and the fifth choice in Round 4. Now it may seem like an uneven move on the trade value chart, but this year’s pool of prospects should skew some numbers. If New England’s ideal first-round candidate is off the board, the decision could be all that easier.

Round 2, Pick 7* – Xavier Su’a-Filo, OG, UCLA

In response to the Jacksonville trade, the Patriots take a step back from the norm and draft an interior offensive lineman with their first selection. If that transpires, it would be the first time New England used their initial pick on an NFL guard prospect since Fresno State’s Logan Mankins in 2005. But much like Mankins, UCLA’s Xavier Su’a-Filo spent most of his collegiate career at offensive tackle, and he showed the versatility to play all across the line when attrition arose.

Su’a-Filo figures to kick inside to guard full-time at the next level. But the 6’4”, 307-pound 23-year-old boasts 33 3/8-inch arms, fluid hips and footwork, excellent hand replacement, and 40 games of starting experience. He should be a day-one starter, and he could be one at right guard for New England.

Round 2, Pick 30 – DaQuan Jones, DT, Penn State

With New England’s second selection of Round 2, the copy-editing nightmare comes to fruition as a third Jones is added to the defensive line. Penn State’s DaQuan Jones proved to be a 6’4”, 322-pound force on the Nittany Lions front over his last two collegiate campaigns. The team captain can play the three-technique, the five-technique and even nose tackle, as his strength and quickness off the snap translates in effectiveness, regardless of starting point.

The 22-year-old was, of course, coached by former Patriots offensive coordinator and play-caller Bill O’Brien for two seasons. And while that “pipeline” may be a moot point now that O’Brien is in Houston, similar coaching philosophies have their way of utilizing similar players. Jones is a scheme-flexible defensive tackle who boasts heavy hands and driving bull rush. He dropped upwards of 25 pounds over the offseason, but he still commanded the run gaps and pressured the quarterback last fall. He could play next to a block-absorber like Vince Wilfork, or he could filter in for him.

Round 3, Pick 29 – C.J. Fiedorowicz, TE, Iowa

Tight end is an undeniable need for New England, which may make you wonder why it’s addressed thirdly in this mock. By this time, the likes of North Carolina’s Eric Ebron, Texas Tech’s Jace Amaro, Washington’s Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Notre Dame’s Troy Niklas are expected to be long gone, but Iowa’s C.J. Fiedorowicz could still be waiting.

Fiedorowicz is a dependable all-around tight end who can block arguably better than his positional peers and can catch arguably better as well. Although the 6’5”, 265-pound Hawkeye is a traditional “Y” tight end who predominantly plays inline, he is also a trusted receiver who can make plays in the seam, hauling in intermediate and red-zone receptions. Although he doesn’t carry the explosive open-field traits other alternatives do, the 22-year-old ran a respectable 4.76 40-yard dash, a 7.10 three-cone and a 4.26 short shuttle in Indianapolis – all of which coincide with the Patriots’ criteria. And for what it’s worth, New England’s coaching connections in Iowa City run deep.

Round 4, Pick 5* – Kareem Martin, DE, North Carolina

Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich combined for 2,256 defensive snaps last season, according to Pro Football Focus. That total was the most on the defensive side of the ball; and for the sake of durability and sustainable pass rush, that total will have to decline in 2014. Now it is expected that New England will add a defensive end in free agency or the draft, even though the future could still be bright for 2013 seventh-rounder Michael Buchanan. And with the fifth pick of Round 4, that addition could be North Carolina’s Kareem Martin.

At 6’6”, 272 pounds with 35-inch arms, Martin looks the part of a Patriots edge-rusher. His athleticism looks the part as well; the 22-year-old Tar Heel ran a 4.72 40-yard dash, a 7.20 three-cone drill, posted a 35 1/2-inch vertical leap and a 129-inch broad jump at the combine. Martin hits on the New England benchmarks for a 4-3 seven-technique, and he bends the arc with good flexibility and lateral agility. And the three-year starter and team captain can also line up as a five-technique in a 3-4. But at this time, Martin’s combine performance is ahead of his on-field performance, which is why he could be available on Day 3.

Round 4, Pick 30 – David Fales, QB, San Jose State

With the 25-year-old Ryan Mallett heading into the final leg of his rookie contract, and with Tom Brady set to turn 37 in August, the Patriots are slowly merging towards the next quarterback chapter. And while there are no guarantees that a fourth-round QB will develop into an NFL starter – let alone an NFL backup – there is a lot to like about San Jose State’s David Fales.

The 6’2”, 212-pound Fales transferred from Monterey Peninsula Community College after the 2011 season and went on to complete 639 of 938 passes for 8,382 yards, 66 touchdowns and 22 interceptions for the Spartans over the last two years. Fales is accurate in the short and intermediate passing game and throws a tight spiral without top-end arm strength or large hands. He may not possess ideal height or a driving deep ball, but he’s a smooth athlete who showcases clean footwork and a swift three-quarters delivery. The 23-year-old two-year starter would find himself in an ideal learning environment if he were to land with the Patriots.

Round 6, Pick 22 – T.J. Jones, WR, Notre Dame

The Patriots had seven rookie wide receivers on the roster in some capacity last season. And there’s reason to believe that a full offseason will help the progression of second-rounder Aaron Dobson, fourth-rounder Josh Boyce, the undrafted Kenbrell Thompkins and the rest of the group. Yet on Day 3 of the draft, the young could get even younger with an often overlooked receiver in Notre Dame’s T.J. Jones.

While only 6’0” and 188 pounds, Jones plays bigger than his size and functions with tremendous body control. He was a key cog in head coach Brian Kelly’s offense, catching 181 passes for 2,429 yards and 19 touchdowns since 2010, including a 70-catch, 1,108-yard, nine-score senior season. Jones is a “Z” target, slot option and punt returner who runs detailed routes and fights at the catch point and after. He fits New England’s wideout measurables, too, notching a 4.48 40-time, 6.82 three-cone, 4.27 short shuttle as well as a 33-inch vertical at the combine. Now ultimately, he may be a No. 3 or No. 4 receiver in the NFL, but he has the upside to be a No. 2 in time.

Round 6, Pick 30 – Bennett Jackson, CB, Notre Dame

There’s a subtle Notre Dame trend on Day 3 of this mock, as Fighting Irish cornerback Bennett Jackson is the choice here at pick 30 of the sixth round. The 6’0”, 195-pound never missed a game during his time in South Bend, playing in 52 and starting his last 26. The team captain has the length to play outside and the athleticism to stay with his assignment. He ran a 4.51 40-yard dash, a 6.75 three-cone time and a 4.00 short shuttle at the combine, but he also showed lower-body explosiveness with a 38-inch vertical and a 128-inch broad jump.

The 22-year-old has the willingness to contribute as a special teams gunner and kickoff returner. And while he can play out of control in run defense and isn’t technically refined coverage-wise, he’s a seasoned, high-effort player who could potentially rise through the ranks in Foxborough.

Round 6, Compensatory – Tyler Starr, OLB, South Dakota

New England’s linebacking corps appears to be set at the top, with Dont’a Hightower, Jerod Mayo and 2013 second-round pick Jamie Collins in line for starting duties in 2014. But with Brandon Spikes and Dane Fletcher set to enter free agency, the Patriots are in need of reinforcements. And that is where South Dakota outside linebacker Tyler Starr comes into the picture.

The 6’4”, 250-pound Starr lined up all over the Coyotes defensive front. The once-freshman safety put his hand in the grass as a seven-technique defensive end; he stood up in the nine-technique off tight ends; he dropped back in coverage from the seam; he drifted in from the boundary. Starr was all around the football, and he earned Missouri Valley Football Conference defensive player of the year honors because of it. Although he didn’t have the combine performance he hoped for – running a 4.95 40-time and looking stiff in on-field drills – he still posted a 6.64 three-cone and a 4.15 20-yard shuttle. All things considered, he could be a worthwhile project for a team like the Patriots on Day 3.

Round 6, Compensatory – Brock Vereen, S, Minnesota

The Patriots could look to add safety help if it isn’t accounted for earlier. And that’s the idea here with a familiar name in Minnesota’s Brock Vereen. Halfback Shane Vereen’s younger brother, Brock’s skill set also illustrates interchangeability. He played cornerback, safety and gunner for the Golden Gophers. And he provided consistency for the Minnesota secondary as well, playing in every game over his final three seasons while starting 32 of them. Now No. 21 isn’t often the primary focus of film cut-ups – as his teammate was defensive tackle Ra’Shede Hageman – but the following video provides of glimpse of his ability at corner and nickelback.

Belichick is often drawn to safeties that can play cornerback or vice versa, like Devin McCourty, Tavon Wilson and even Eugene Wilson. Vereen is in that mold, as a compact but rangy 6’0”, 199-pounder. He didn’t look out of place at the combine, either, running a 4.47 40-time, a 6.90 three-cone, a 4.07 short shuttle, benching 25 reps of 225 pounds, and recording a 34-inch vertical jump. He embodies the criteria New England’s personnel department has valued.

Round 7, Pick 29 – Jake Murphy, TE, Utah

It’s reasonable to think the Patriots look to acquire a different type of tight end at some point in the draft. And that’s the plan here as the team’s seventh-round pick is spent on Utah’s Jake Murphy. Murphy served a two-year LDS mission and has a family of his own, which likely played a part in his decision to enter the draft as an under-the-radar junior. He will be a 25-year-old rookie, but he’s a sure-handed “F” tight end who can stand in as H-back as well as in the seam.

Murphy stood out at the combine, not necessarily for his 4.79 40-yard dash, 7.18 three-cone, 4.27 short shuttle or his 24 bench reps, but because he was smooth in on-field workouts. The gauntlet and other tests exemplified his swiftness through the catch and sure hands. He’s only started 14 games over the past three years and was unsteady as a blocker, but he’s a 6’4”, 249-pound receiver who brings a different card into the shuffle.

Special thanks to DraftBreakdown.com.


46 Responses to “2014 Patriots Seven-Round Mock Draft: Pre-Free Agency Edition”

  1. Jack says:

    I’m telling you troy Niklas of Norte dame

  2. sco508 says:

    Mark it Down Ladies if Evans falls past the top 10 BB Moves up and Snags Him !!!

    Ebron Meh This is about Red Zone and CJF nope T Nickles maybe but not enough tape .

    J. Amaro i wouldn’t touch with a 3rd rounder !! ASJ is Close but plays way to Dainty not
    a Bulldozer like Gronk !!

    I like my bud A. Dobson ” Witch i Called the Pats Picking him ” thought the 3rd not the 2nd but oh well i’m not BB

    Get your Head out of your Cabooses !

    Nix Maybe ?! But R . Hageman Nope ! Tuitt Nope ! get of the D-line Bit guys !

    Only other player is se them taking in the 1st thats a DL is Kony Ealy . OL would be

    Xavier Su’a-Filo But if i was BB it would be Brandon Thomas OG/OT Clem . and watch out

    for the Brandon Cooks pick !

  3. Pete says:

    The Pats could do the unthinkable this year. Trade a future #1 for a #2 this year (Jax and Cleveland are options). WIth Brady window closing, they need to develop prospects now. We all hear it usually takes a year to develop a rookie. Collins & Dobson showed flashes but could be major contributors in 2014. So with that in mind many of these picks are viewed with 2015 impact in mind.

    1. Pats trade a 1st next year and a 4th this year for Cleveland #2 this year and #7 this year.
    2. Pats trade the second #2 for a mid round #3 and a #5 this year.

    1. R. Hageman, DT, MN
    2. J. Amaro, TE, Texas Tech (From Cleveland)
    3. C. Borland, ILB, Wisconsin
    3. D. McCullers, NT, Tenn
    5. B. Coleman, WR, Rutgers
    6. K. Carey, RB, Arizona
    6. D. Easley, DT, Florida
    7. V. Sunseri, S, Alabama
    7. M. Patchman, OT, Boston College

    Hageman has huge upside and can rotate in on the DL immediately.
    Amaro could slip just out of the first round and start immediately.
    Borland replaces Fletcher and is an immediate 4 team specialist. Also can play Brandon Spikes role on early downs and goal line.
    McCullers is a gamble but at 6-6, 350lbs, put him under Wilfork for a year and see what happens. Maybe a healthy inactive when playing pass heavy teams.
    Coleman gives them a big target. Will compete with ex-teamate Harrison and Thompkins for spot on the team.
    Carey allows Pats to maintain RB depth. Assuming Blount walks he is the 4th RB behind Ridley, Vereen and Bolden. If he develops he takes Ridley or Bolden spot in 2015 and keeps cap space spent on RB position low.
    Easley is placed on PUP or IR depending on rate of recovery of ACL tear. Given two ACL tears only a few teams can afford to stash him away so he slips. Potential starter 2015/2016.
    Sunseri, the Tavon Wilson experiment comes to an end. Another ST guy who has a chance to work his way up to the #2 Saftey spot over time. Great teammate. The Edlemen of the D!
    Patchman. Late bloomer big OT to be groomed behind Vollmer and Solder. Inactive or PS in 2014 but a potential backup or starter in 2015/16.

    For 2014, 2 starters, 3 part time/ST, 3 Inactives and a PUP.

  4. J H TARBORO says:

    Tebow rumblings again! Could we see Tebow once again in the NFL? let alone the Patriots for round #2

    • steve earle says:

      Haven’t heard those rumblings JH but let’s not take them seriously if they are coming around. But what do you mean about rd 2? I’m confused by that?

    • J H TARBORO says:

      Meaning of round 2 is, he’ll be looking for a team and he wants to play football again, will the Pats try him out again?

  5. J H TARBORO says:

    Cincinnati pro day TE Blake Annen 6’4″ 247 ran a 4.41 and 4.42 in the 40yd and hoisted 27 reps at 225 and displayed good hands with on field drills. I believe he was a teammate to our own Kenbrell Thompkins.

    • J H TARBORO says:

      Wisconsin pro day S Dezmen Southward 6’2 215 ran 4.38 and 4.41 which would have been #1 safety at the combine but he wasn’t invited and had a very good workout.

    • acm says:

      Those should be unofficial, hand-timed 40-yarders but still quite impressive.

      I can so see Southward and Brock Vereen battle it out for the “BB 2nd round reach” title this year.

  6. steve earle says:

    I do think BB will trade out of the first unless an excepitional talent slips down to us but that’s not very likely. Su’a-flo wouldn’t be my choice for a high 2nd, sorry. I like DaQuan Jones at #30, CJF in the 3rd would be okay but would prefur ASJ with the high 2nd from the trade. Like a CB/S in the 3rd if possable as some very decent talent should available there. Not at all interested in Martin in 4th, to many very good OG/OT prospects around which project as early starters or at least early contributers. 3rd day guys after that are anyones guess so these are not a bad bunch and might contain a hidden gem.

  7. RMillette says:

    yeah I don’t see an o lineman first pick and wouldn’t be surprised if they doubled up on Defensive lineman in the first 2 picks. Would like to see them slide Cannon into the guard slot and draft Matt Patchan out of BC in the later rounds for the OT role.

  8. YESSIR77 says:

    Not sold. We need help at DT, TE, DE right now. Not saying to not address the OL in the later rds. We need to get to the QB, and get a TE who can catch more than 1 TD when Gronk is out. I like the trade back, unless Nix is there.

  9. Russell says:

    I think given this years deep draft more teams are ready to trade back out of the first round. This may make it had for Bill to trade back. So I’m going BOLD with my Mock with the Patriots staying at #29.

    1st- QB A.J.McCarron
    2nd- DE/LB Marus Smith
    3d- TE Arthur Lynch
    4th- CB Phillip Gaines
    6th- S Brock Vereen
    6th- DT Zac Kerr
    C 6th- OG Spencer Long
    C 6th- CB Walt Aikens
    7th- LB Tana Patrick

    • Russell says:

      I also feel if Bill does not move Mallett, he will have three QB’s on the Roster. He could make room by cutting LS Akien, and move Braxton Cave up on the roster as a back-up OC and Long Snapper.

    • Bill Vermont says:

      I would be at all surprised to see Pats take a QB in 1st rd, much like the Packers did when Rogers was drafted. Another great franchise with vision.

      The rest of your draft seems to players that belong at that spot, but I’d be disappointed if they waited to the 6th Rd to get an OL. Tana Patrick is a little ecletic, but who knows in 7th Rd.

    • Daniel R. Martin says:

      I like the following picks in your draft: Spencer Long. That is all.

    • steve earle says:

      Not really a fan of your mock Russell. I’d probably hit my thumb with a hammer if McCarron was taken by Bill at #29. After all you just don’t draft a guy in the first rd who will be sitting on the bench for a couple years. I do think OT is more likely right that BB trades down and out anyway.

    • acm says:

      Can’t see them take AJM or any other QB this early, tbh. BB is more of a value and intangibles first guy, who’s bent on developing a late-r round player and after striking gold with Brady, I can’t imagine him taking a Qb in the 1st unless we are talking Andrew Luck-level talent and AJM isn’t that. Not saying he wouldn’t be on the Pats radar just not as a 1st rounder. I can definitely see BB go after AJM in the 3rd-4th round, same with Mettenberger imo, if he fell there and the value was just too good (e.g. Mallett) but not before that.
      I also expect them to carry a 3rd Qb this year but if Mallett were to stay, I’d think that developmental player would be a late round pick or an UDFA or a FA like Griffin, bray, etc should they get cut. Drafting a QB as early as the 3rd-4th round even would suggest mallett would no longer be around, imo.

      I think the rest of the mock is pretty decent – players I can see BB be interested in – although I am not sure they represent the optimal choice in talent and value, at least that’s when it comes to the early to mid-round picks. But you never know with him – just watch him take Brock Vereen in the 3rd, now that Gregory is out.

      Keeping Talib seems less and less likely at this point, so there is a good chance they’d have to double-dip at CB with the 1st player taken a lot earlier than the 4th.

      • steve earle says:

        Agree with you on this post acm, a QB @29 would be foolish imo, unless one of the top2-3 guys falls but what are the chances there? Pretty much zero! I didn’t really see much from the combine to make me change my previous mocks at this point. Unless Nix, Martin or somebody slides really badly it looks like a trade down of #29 to me. Mallett is everones question at this point, Your right in thinking if BB takes a QB 4th or above he is probably a gonner. As I said the combine didn’t clear the picture much so just have to see what FA does I guess.

  10. bags says:

    Why can’t Cannon finally be moved to his natural RG position? Then draft a T that’s a bit more on the developmental/injured side between picks 100-130 such as James Hurst. He would have been a top 55 pick w/o the broken leg and he’s a 6′ 7″ 300 lb giant the way BB likes them.(4th round)

    I expect a trade down of the 1st pick, and a deal of Mallett for a high 3rd, and more mixing and matching trades. I’d even trade next years 1st to get another 2nd rounder this year.

    TE – Seferian-Jenkins is my first pick – mid/late 30’s, his ceiling is higher than CJF IMO.

    DT and WR are next. I expect VW to be cut. I expect we won’t be able to get the help in WR we need in FA (excessive cost), so we need a prime draft pick – Moncrief would be nice. On the DT side Quarles should be good value in the 3rd.

    If we do bag more picks from 50-100 I’d love to draft Jean Baptiste at CB.

    We could use a C/G or G/C to develop. Next year we can think about a LG since Mankins is aging, but not done yet.

    I like Fales, but I like Brett Smith too. Either way. Sign a crap back-up (let’s face it, if Brady is hurt, Mallett or any other 2nd string isn’t going to win a SB, so why worry it this year?)

    • TD says:

      Move Cannon inside & they need a backup T, leave him outside & they need a G; take your pick unless of course they retain Connolly and/or Wendell.

      I’m not sure they can or want to trade Mallet. Why would a team trade a pick(s) for him just to have him become a UFA next year? They can either wait for Pat’s to let him go or tender a restricted offer for him like Pat’s did for Emanuel Sanders last year. I expect them to treat him much like they did Hoyer; tender him a second tier UFA until they can replace him. #12 is going to be here for at least 3 more years and BB is not going to pay a backup $6-8 million just to hold a clip board.

      • steve earle says:

        Been thinking about your question of why a team might trade for Mallett with only 1 yr left. Can’t answer for the thinking of others but it occures to me to be a low risk deal to pick him up for a couple choices & start him. If he shows promase then sign him up long term, if not let him go. Little risk difference from drafting a second level rookie QB except they wouldn’t be stuck for three or four more years. No 6-7 million clip board carrier involved.

      • bags says:

        Cannon has and is going to play at a higher level at G than T. In fact IMO he’s a starting quality RG in the NFL right now, but not a starting quality RT. Also the Pats are deeper at back-up T than G. Not to suggest that they won’t need to bring in a good swing T via draft or FA if Cannon moves, but, Cannon is coming up on FA next year, might as well see if he is wort retaining as a starting RG as opposed to a back-up T.

        A team isn’t going to deal for Mallett to sit on the bench, it’s either to start or challenge for starting. Houston for instance can cash in their #1 pick on a QB or Clowney, or just deal back and get help at several positions. If they decide the QB’s are big gambles, then move in other directions. At this point they could go ahead and deal their 33rd pick for Mallett and our 62nd and 126th – that would be about the same as them trading the 69th for Mallet.

        Not a big fan of Mallett, but he does have the arm. If they can give him protection and an offense where he can read his options quickly he could be quite effective. If he has to go on the run and improvise he’s going to fail.

        • steve earle says:

          Like your thinking on both Cannon and Mallett. Lots of guys thinking Houston covets Clowney, may be ,but they really need a QB. I can’t decide what they will do just have to wait and see I guess.

  11. Bill Vermont says:

    That’s a pretty good draft. The trade is reasonable, the first 4 picks are excellent, after the 4th rd, who knows who is there anyway. Everyone has a fave QB to develop, and Fales certainly lit it up a few times last season. Good effort, Oliver

  12. bmp1113 says:

    pretty good mock. I think daquan jones is the best value for the patriots at dt unless nix takes a slide and would be a great fit for the pats.

  13. acm says:

    Good one, Oliver Thomas. I quite like the top 3 picks and those are players who imo have BB written all over them.

    My problem with this mock is what you do in the 4th round there:

    1) K. Martin has the ideal size and measurements of a DE but lacks tenacity, aggressiveness, bend and speed around the edge, as well as technique to get to the QB. If he had those, with that size and the way he tested at combine, he’d have been a top 10 pick, most likely, which is to say there is a good reason why he is expected to be a 4th-5th round pick.
    I do agree the Pats need help at DE but don’t see what Martin would bring to the table that players of similar type/style and stature in jones and Bucanon already haven’t.
    If they had to have a DE in this part of the draft, I think a player like Demarcus Lawrence, for example, would complement much better the DEs already on the roster and would offer speed, terrific bend, tenacity and edge in his play, as well as positional versatility to play OLB/LB as well.

    2) I honestly doubt D. Fales would measure up to BB’s standards for a QB, literally. His lack of ideal height and especially hand-size may well take him out of the running, imo. Arm-length isn’t too generous either. You’d need the big hand for that tight spiral in the elements or to hold onto the ball in freezing/wet conditions and I think he may fall short there.
    I’d look to get a CB here, as Talib doesn’t look very likely to be back, and a developmental QB later in the 6th – possibly Mathews. A player with size like Phillip Gaines or S/CB Dontae Johnson or even if a smaller Cb like EJ Gaines has fallen here.

    To be fair, if Talib doesn’t come back, this would make the CB position of much greater need than the 4th round, so the mock would likely look pretty different.

    • Brian says:

      I like the looks of Demarcus Lawrence. What do you think about marcus smith out of Louisville? Pretty similar players

      • acm says:

        Smith is a good player too but a bit different in what he brings to the table compared to Lawrence despite the similarities in position at the college level and measureables. Smith’s past as a LB make him more of an OLB and better in dropping back in coverage, while Lawrence is more of a pass-rush oriented guy (in the speed-rusher role alla Chris Clemons). He could still drop back and learn to play the OLB/LB role on occasion but that would be a secondary strength for him at this point and needs to work quite a bit on that. Similarly, pass rush is the lesser strength of Smith’s but he is more balanced in that regard than Lawrence and is more ready to play the OLB role at the NFL.

        It’s that detail that makes me think Lawrence may fall further in the draft (late 3rd to 4th round and maybe even more) than the draft experts are predicting (3rd and even 2nd round) – size-wise he fits better at the NFl as an OLB, while he himself seems to be an undersized QB head-hunter and because of that could be seen as a situational player … along the same lines of why Michael Sam is expected to fall or why players like Clemons, Avril, Mathis fell or went undrafted.
        Smith on the other hand I expect to see picked no later than mid 3rd round, quite possibly late 2nd.

        A player closer to how Smith projects in the NFL I’d say is Jeremiah Attaochu (GA St), who I think falls somewhere between the two in ability to drop back and rush the passer. I think Attaochu falls a bit deeper than Smith but not by much and expect him to be gone by mid 3rd, as well. He is a relatively raw player (very much like Lawrence) and doesn’t have Smith’s play awareness in coverage but plays with an edge and tenacity that I don’t see in Smith’s play. Lawrence is similar in that regard to Attaochu – a relentless, physical player in his own right. And that’s what I like more about Attaochu and Lawrence than I do about Smith – I think they have more of that “it” factor and bring character and attitude to the game, as well as a higher ceiling/potential, despite being less polished at this point.
        Attaochu and Lawrence I see as a poor but not-so-poor man’s Khalil Mack … Smith on the other hand, not so much.

    • Russell says:

      Good insite on DE Martin. I tend to think Bill goes for a LB type pass rusher, to also add depth at the LB position. Marcus Smith looks the part to me.
      I think Bill trades back out of the first but not sure Jacksonville, gains much moving from #39 to #29. I’m thinking Dallas at #47 or Chicago at #51 wanting to move up to #29.

  14. Brian says:

    I like he idea of getting another pass rushing DE to add to the rotation, but I don’t like Kareem Martin. He comes across as a lazy non chalant kind of player that would be easy to line up against. I want someone more aggressive to give our defence an attitude if you will.

    Also after debating all of the positions and picks that we have, I have come to the realization that our team has quite a few holes and that we should just take the top rated player available that fits our scheme. Besides QB and OT and maybe LB, we aren’t set or couldn’t use an upgrade on any other positions. Obviously that can change with free agency but right now that’s the plan I’d go in with if I was Bill.

  15. PatsfaninAZ says:

    I like all of this and seems like a very typical Pats draft. No super stars but good football players and some with some good upside

  16. Jim R says:

    Got Hageman film in Vereens slot. I do however like getting Hageman there

  17. JB says:

    This would be an absolutely terrible draft haul for the pats. Xavier Su’a-Filo is routinely beaten in pass pro especially by defensive line twists and has trouble anchoring v bull rush. He is a great run blocker but interior pass protection should be the top offensive priority as Brady is a pure drop-back passer with no mobility aside from sliding in the pocket. Daquan Jones doesnt seem worth a second round pick at all. I do like the Iowa tight end late third round as he looks to be a Heath Miller clone.

  18. Martin says:

    Underwhelmed by this draft. Not thrilled about any DL prospects as slam dunks. Maybe a flyer on Easley in the late second as a high reward prospect. I would rathe a focus on increasing offensive mismatches such as a dual threat TE, a pass catching RB who can consistently beat LB and S coverage or even a Size speed mismatch WR such as Bryant or Coleman. These needs are match harder and more expensive to fill via free agency. OG, DT can be met via free agency. That being said off the cuff I might prefer this:

    1) TE Jace Amaro
    2) DE/DT Dominique Easley
    3) WR Brandon Coleman
    4) RB Jerrick McKinnon
    6) CB Aaron Colvin
    6) TE Colt Lyerla

  19. tim says:

    I respect this mock draft for stepping outside the box and predicting a trade, but there is too much talent in this draft to make the awful selections that are seen above. In how ever many trades needed, trade Amendola, Mallett, and Ridley and stockpile picks. Draft Andre Williams in the 3rd round at RB. Look at the list of college running backs to run for 2,000 yards in history. The list is impressive. He played at BC down the road and is a monster. Take a wide receiver and tight end early. With the added picks from trades, go corner and both sided lineman in between. Although unlikely, they should resign spikes so their is somewhat of fear in the defense. There are too many great receivers in this draft to pass a big body up. Martavis Bryant out of Clemson is going to be a steal, and Kelvin Benjamin can make up for the lack of red zone production the Patriots have had.

  20. Michael says:

    Not crazy about this draft.

    • Philip says:

      same here … I like the idea of trading out of the 1st round, but not for a 2nd and 4th round pick.
      1st for 2nd, 3rd (and maybe a 4th next year) would be ok.

      I don’t like the first 2 picks as well … take Tuitt with the traded pick and the best corner (hopefully McGill) with our own 2nd. Talib seems more and more gone.
      3r round CJF is OK.

      Drafting a QB only when Malett is traded.

      • Phil says:

        Not a fan of Tuitt either. I don’t like DaQuan Jones, or Tuitt.

        • steve earle says:

          Hey Phil you say you don’t like either Tuitt or Jones. I like them both just not crazy about Tuitt taken that high. What are you seeing about them I might not be that makes you feel as you do? Is it their game or where they are being slotted you don’t care for?

    • Daniel R. Martin says:

      I’m glad someone else was willing to offer a dissenting opinion. There is very little about this mock that I’d like as a fan, personally. Deep draft or not, I doubt BB will be willing to give up his 1st round selection for a second and fourth right after he received a 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 7th a year ago.

      Also, understanding that O-Line is of paramount importance, but also with the realization that we have had and continue to have a serviceable if not good O-line overall, I would be pissed if BB selected an offensive linemen with the team’s first selection because we have far greater needs and the time for building for the future is well passed. If we continue this Madness Tom Brady will finish his HOF career with what has been, with little exception, a weak, anemic receiving corps, barring the TE position for a couple of seasons, of course.

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