Scouting Report: Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE

Odighizuwa may be hard to pronounce, but it is not hard to see why scouts like him so much.

Odighizuwa may be hard to pronounce, but it is not hard to see why scouts like him so much.

NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Gerken

I think I may have found my first “binkie” of this years draft class.  Most of you know what the terms means, but just in case, let me give you my version of what draft “binkie” means.  This is a player or players that you fall in love with and think are a perfect fit for your team.  “Binkies” can do no wrong and the team should do whatever they must to insure this player is on the team.  These players do not necessarily have to be early draft picks, in fact, most are later guys with crazy athleticism or size that you think your favorite team could develop into a star.  I got lucky last year as the Patriots did indeed draft one of my “binkies,” Dominique Easley.  I had him rated as the 4th best player in the entire draft and didn’t care about the health problems.  This year, another player with health concerns has entered “binkie” status, will I get lucky two years in a row? Let’s find out why I like Owamagbe Odighizuwa.

Name: Owamagbe Odighizuwa (pronounced Oh-wah-MAH-bay Oh-DIGGY-zoo-wah)

School: UCLA (Sr.)

Height: 6’3″

Weight: 266 Lbs.



Odighizuwa is a versatile player with good size. He has a powerful frame with long arms.  In college, he played DE and OLB in the 3-4 as well as DE and as the under tackle in the 4-3.  Odighizuwa plays with good power, leverage and technique.  He has a non stop motor and is consistently disrupting plays, both in the run game and pass game.  Odighizuwa has very active hands and good arm extension, which leads to his ability to stack and shed offensive linemen.  In the run game, Odighizuwa shows good power to set the edge.  In the passing game, he flashes good athleticism and good bend to be a pass rush threat. He has a nice first step and will beat his opponent with a variety of moves when rushing the passer.



The biggest issue with  Owamagbe Odighizuwa is typing and pronouncing his name.  In all seriousness, the big issue with Odighizuwa are the medical concerns.  He has had multiple hip surgeries which required him to miss the entire 2013 season.  He really only has one year of significant playing time and production.  Odighizuwa does not possess elite speed and at times would be a step late when rushing the passer.  He won with power, technique, and his non stop motor in college and that lack of true speed could be a concern at the next level.



I think my opening probably tipped you off that I am all in on this guy, injury concerns and all.  I don’t like to do player comparisons because in truth, I am not very good at it, but when I watch Odighizuwa I see Mike Vrabel or a rich man’s Rob Ninkovich if you need a current player comparison.  Josh Norris coined the phrase “disruption is production” and that describes Odighizuwa to a T.  He is all over the field and he is consistently making the play or doing something to allow someone else to make the play.  Odighizuwa may not put up eye popping sack numbers, but put into this Patriots scheme, I think he could be productive as a pass rusher.  He gets a first round grade from me and will be high on the list when I do my overall rankings.


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103 Responses to “Scouting Report: Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE”

  1. charles jr. says:

    we should go for this guy in the 3rd round

  2. GM-in-Training says:

    What impresses me about how the Pats put together their superbowl run this year was how many of the pieces had been in place for a long time. Vereen was drafted for exactly that kind of game. Gronk was eased back slowly from injury so he’d be available late in the season for exactly that kind of game. Browner came back after suspension which allowed Butler to develop early in the season. We’d been hearing about Butler’s ball hawking in training camp. Revis was brought in to take away the opponent’s number 1 receiver for exactly that kind of game. Collins was a former Safety in college to be able to cover in the middle or shadow a mobile QB. Arrington was brought in to be a smart LB, big enough to play the run, fast enough to apply pressure. Edelman shadowed Welker for a couple years as understudy to become exactly that kind of first-down machine. The Pats have developed high-tempo play and short passes to neutralize blitzing teams. The Pats used play-action to freeze the defenders and open gaps for the short passes. The Pats receivers were all about the short pass to avoid running in stride with the Richard Sherman’s of the world. Lots of their personnel decisions seem to have been made exactly to beat Seattle. I think they got the matchup they wanted at the beginning of the season.

  3. Dylan.C says:

    Man Malcom Brown from Texas is a beast! To bad he will be long gone before the Pats pick.

    The more and more I look at this draft the more it looks like it is LOADED with edge rusher and DT talent which is great because this is a huge need area for the Patriots. Looks like the second round is the sweet spot for interior offensive linemen as well. I would be very content if the Pats walk away with two edge rushers, two guards, and one or two DTs. In my dream world the Pats would find a way to trade their first back into the early second, somehow trade back up into the mid second, and still take their allotted second round pick so that they end up taking three second round picks total.

    No reason for the Pats to take an early pick on WR. If you factor in Dobson and Boyce they have a pretty crowded depth chart and I think Dola will be back on a restructured contract. Plus lets be realistic about Bill taking a receiver early. Their offense doesn’t need a big down-field threat why waste the pic when we only have a few Brady years left. BEEF UP THE LINE ON BOTH SIDES!

    • Joe Blake says:

      Agree 100%. Brady is a great short and intermediate range passer. Go deep occasionally to keep the defense honest. Go OL and front 7 on D.

  4. J H TARBORO says:

    Any thoughts on FAs DE Justin Houston and DE Greg Hardy who got cleared of assault charges. Potential Patriots or not?

    • Dylan.C says:

      Only way we would have the $$ for those two is if Revis and or McCourty leave and I’d rather keep them over brining in outside players. This draft is one of the deepest at DE in recent memory and you don’t exactly find players like DMAC and Revis on the street or in the draft.

      Defensive line definitely needs to be a priority though, can’t expect Jones and Nink to play every down like they have the last few seasons. Establishing a rotation and keeping the edge rushers legs fresh would do this group wonders.

      I like Nate Orchard from Utah, looks like he will go somewhere between the late first and second depending how hyped up he gets. I could see his stock skyrocketing if he has a good combine.

    • acm says:

      It’s a deep DE class, so it would probably be best to improve the position thru the draft, considering Houston (if he hits the market at all) would command an enormous contract, virtually impossible for Pats to be willing to match.

      As for Hardy, he didn’t get cleared, he was convicted and was appealing the verdict when the charges got dropped as a result of he and the victim settling out of court. I don’t think he is position to ask for a big-money, multi-year contract right now, making him a better value than Houston.
      Problem, I don’t see the Pats going after a player with his checkered past.

  5. acm says:

    The more I think about it, the more I convince myself that the Pats need to severely upgrade the OL. By now, that should be plenty obvious to just about everybody, I’d think.

    A big factor in how they go about it would be if they bring back Connolly and at what price. Solder is just nowhere near the same player without an experienced LG guiding his butt there. Problem is DC is getting up there in age (will be 33 yo next season) and has had quite a few injuries (concussions), so it wouldn’t be out of the question if he retires, now that he is a SB champ too. Even if he decided to come back, it’s unlikely he’d do it for a team-friendly contract.

    All of the above makes me think the Pats would really benefit from getting Mike Iupati in free agency. I know, he is gonna cost a good deal and then some but they’d be getting their money’s worth and filling out a big, huge even, need on the OL. A need that’s not very likely to be filled even by drafting multiple interior OL-men in 2015 as they’d need time to develop and the OL can’t be left without a leader, hence the argument to splash on someone like Iupati. Gotta make the most of Brady’s window, after all, and now they have a good deal of young talent on the roster (and also assuming/hoping they keep Revis and DMac).
    Sure, Iupati won’t come cheap but if they resign players like Dmac and Solder (not that big a fan but it seems the Pats would want to keep him) to long term deals, restructure Wilfork and mayo, and with the cap expected to go up by close to 10 mil yet again (iirc), I’d think they would be able to afford investing in the OL even with Revis staying.

    Also, I think the Pats could well consider drafting a TE, if the rght player is on board, as an alternative to Gronk in the passing game. That player would have to be a good run-blocker too.

    Given the above, here is my mock at this point in time (assuming a 3rd-round comp. pick):

    1) DE Owa Odighizuwa (assuming he checks out medically)
    2) TE Clive Walford
    3) OG Jake Fisher / Daryl Williams
    3) (comp.) OG Ali Marpet
    4) (Tampa) DB Jaquiski Tartt / Kurtis Drummond / Eric Rowe / Josh Shaw
    4) DT Xavier Williams
    6) (Tampa) WR Kenny Bell / Dezmin Lewis
    7) (Tenn.) DT/DE Kristjan Sokoli

    A lot would depend on whether they bring back RB Vereen and WR Amendola and some lower key players like Ayers and Casillas, for example. If Vereen leaves, any other potential late comp. picks, I’d look to spend on RB Corey Grant (Auburn).

    • J H TARBORO says:

      ACM, i like what you put there. i hate the down time waiting for the Combine and Pro days.

    • Freemanator says:

      Not sure Solder needs a veteran next to him, as much as consistency and someone he can trust to do his job. I think if a guy worthy of our first round pick fell to us/within reasonable trading range (aka Scherff, Collins or Erving) then it could work.

      And we can’t afford Iupati as well as Revis and McCourty, things are just too tight. And we’ll need to spend some of any extra cap space we have on more reasonably priced guys.

      • acm says:

        You may be right about the reason behind Solder’s issues this year – something I’ve considered too – but can you bet next season on it? The one thing we know for sure is that he’s looked worse than average without the likes of Mankins or Connolly next to him.
        Also, that OL will need a leader, a role Connolly took over after mankins was traded. Vollmer could potentially take on that role but who else? Solder just ain’t it.
        Just don’t see a rookie take on that role from day one. Mankins slotted in nicely 10 or so years ago but he was surrounded by experienced OL-men, making his transition easier. Pats could well end up in a situation where they ask too much of their rookie(s) next year.

        Now, I could live more easily with someone like Scherff, Collins, Flowers falling to them but that’s not likely to happen. Erving I like too but think he is a level or so below those other 3 players and even he may well not be on board at 32.

        As for Pats being able to afford an Iupati type FA signing, I can see why you are skeptical. It’s not gonna be easy but I don’t think it’s entirely impossible either. The question for me would be more along the lines of “Would they be willing to do it?”.
        Cap is expected to go up by ~10 mil; no Hernandez dead money on the cap anymore; Restructuring existing contracts (Mayo, Wilfork, DA) and signing long term deals (DMac, Revis, Solder, Gostkowski, etc) would create cap space too; signing Iupati would mean Connolly’s 4 mil contract from last year is off the books too.

        • Jeff says:

          ACM, being able to sign a stud guard would be great, but although I agree that if they went all out to do it they could manage to make that signing and keep other players, I think it would leave them with too many large contracts to be able to keep and extend key guys like Solder, C. Jones, Hightower, and Collins. I’d rather see that cash go to keeping established guys that the Patriots feel comfortable with than go looking elsewhere. I could see Connolly coming back on a 1-2 year deal if they want a veteran presence because he shouldn’t command too high a price and will be a short-term investment that they can move on from after a season if their draft picks show good development.

        • acm says:

          Jeff, I understand where you are coming from and I very much have the same concerns. I am merely making the assumption that they can afford a signing like Iupati here and that it won’t get in the way of keeping some key players down the line. Personally, I don’t think it’s an unreasonable assumption to make as cap room is a fluid, ever-changing entity and one could well expect other big contracts (e.g. Wilfork, Mayo) to be off the books sooner than later.
          Also, I am not sure Pats would be able to extend players like Solder and Jones, anyway. I think the conditions are there so that they (their agents) may well end up looking for richer contracts than the Pats would be willing to grant them. Let’s face it – neither Solder nor Jones are the studs we’d like them to be i.e. the room for improvement is there and I am not sure one could call either of them them “irreplaceable”. That may well be reflected in what their value to the Pats turns out to be in future contract negotiations. I frankly foresee a discrepancy in the evaluation of the players by both sides on that table, also considering the recent SB win.
          By now, I think the Pats should have a decent idea of where things stand, though, and I think that may be reflected in their draft – getting a LT and/or loading up on DEs could be a sign pointing in that direction.

          Regrading Connolly – we are gonna have to agree to disagree on that one. I simply don’t see a reason as to why he’d have an incentive to come back on a team friendly deal (i.e. something not too far off the vet minimum). He is up there in age, with a history of worrisome injuries, that represent a considerable risk for his long-term well-being and just won a SB. And he just played a season on a 4+ mil salary. Considering it’s the Pats that need him more than he needs them, I just don’t see him coming back on the cheap.

        • steve earle says:

          I’m onboard with signing Iupati right after we lock up Revis, McCourty and Gostkowski to long term deals. But then the question begs can we then resign Vereen, Ayers and some of our other FA’s? I’d hope we could but not all together sure.

    • J H TARBORO says:

      How do you feel about Umass TE Jean Sifrin 6’7 250lbs in later rounds. He’s extremely athletic for his size.

      • acm says:

        Like the prospect, just not sure he’d offer anything more than Tim Wright, as a pure passing TE.
        If they can’t get Walford, I’d probably like to see them not draft another TE. There is always UDFAs and maybe even could kick the tires of Dustin Keller too. Things could change if the Pats end up getting a late comp. pick, which could be spent on the TE position.

        Without Walford, I’d modify my mock like this:

        1) DE Owa Odighizuwa (assuming he checks out medically)
        2) OG/T Jake Fisher / Daryl Williams
        3) OG Ali Marpet
        3) (comp.) DB Jaquiski Tartt / Kurtis Drummond / Eric Rowe / Josh Shaw
        4) (Tampa) RB David Johnson / Jeremy Langford (reminds me of Matt Forte)
        4) DT Xavier Williams
        6) (Tampa) WR Kenny Bell / Dezmin Lewis
        7) (Tenn.) DT/DE Kristjan Sokoli

        • Brian says:

          I would be tickled pink if the actual draft played out that way. Only way I’d be happier is if you put Justin Hardy WR East carolina into the 3rd round slot. Assuming he is available which he very well might not be.

          I know a lot of people think we are set at WR, however Hardy reminds me Emmanuel sanders which would be a great fit for our offence going forward.

          Any opinion on Virginia DE/OLB Eli Harold ACM? I know he’s on the lighter side but in the games I’ve seen I liked his speed and saw a decent punch on a couple occasions. While getting swallowed up on other occasions. Could be a 3rd down pin your ears back player his first year while adding weight and getting better against the run for his second year.

        • acm says:

          I like WR Hardy a lot myself. For me, he and WR R. Greene represent two of the best values in a deep and talented WR class this year. So, yeah, depending on how things play out on draft day, I wouldn’t mind seeing Pats take Hardy/Greene if they decide to go Wr earlier than 6th rnd or so, a scenario I can envision if Danny A. is let go.
          The mock above was based on the assumption that they go WR later in the draft and I thought a player like Kenny Bell gives you a lot of what Hardy/greene would do too, at a lower price. In the scenario I play out in the mock, I guess I could slot in Hardy in late 3rd/early 4th, in place of either the Rb or the DB.

          Regrading Eli Harold, I like the player a lot too but, like you said, he is a bit on the lighter side making him more of an off-line OLB in the NFL and occasional pass rusher. If they keep Ayers, Pats should have that role well covered imo plus I have concerns about Harold’s value, considering his stock has been rising lately. Plus, I am not convinced how good he is dropping in coverage, which is how one can expect to see him utilized in the NFL, at least at first.
          Someone like Owa Odighizuwa, is athletic enough to be a DE but also big enough to play on the interior in passing situations – a Michael Bennett type player, who would be of more use to the Pats imo. Other players I like at the DE position, who are better built for the NFL than Harold and would quite possibly be available later in the draft are (i.e. better value) – Trey Flowers, Lorenzo Mauldin, Nate Orchard, etc.

        • Brian says:

          Agreed. I think Harold impressives at the underwear Olympics and a team like the colts take him to help their lowly pass rush. I just don’t see a lot of value this year in the first round so I wouldn’t mind a trade down to get an extra 3rd or 4th rounder and maybe move back into the 2nd round.

          What would please me is if Todd burley is available at the end of the first and we made him our selection. I know a lot of folks prefer to build the interior O’line to make holes instead, but I just don’t see many quality guards or tackle conversions worthy of our first pick. If this happened it could be a similar situation to the Easley pick where we snag a top 10 talent that falls due to injury. If Gurley recovers his form, we could have our marshawn lynch that could help Brady out immensely for his final years. That would also allow us to cut down on how many RB’s we have freeing up roster space for other positions. All this would obviously depend on RB needy teams not taking him before us.

          And yes we won a super bowl without having a bell cow, but you can’t tell me that Seattle respected our run game one bit in the super bowl. We won because Brady was magic and the receivers didn’t make any untimely drops like previous years.

          In my ideal world the draft goes like so:

          1st round – Todd Gurley/ Owamagbe Odighizuwa
          2nd round – Jake Fisher/ DJ Humphries
          3rd round Xavier Cooper/ Ali Marpet
          4th round- Justin hardy/ Jeremiah Poutasi

    • John says:

      I think the only way to vastly improve the OL is through free agency. I really don’t like the idea of using a first round pick on an OLineman, especially in this years draft, unless someone like Schreff or Collins are available at 32. Would not trade up for either though, when there will be some menacing to be had when they pick.

      Like the Walford value, but can you rationalize the pick? I felt like they are set at TE and WR. I know people clamor for Gronk depth, would this be depth for offense flexibility?

      • John says:



      • acm says:

        That’s pretty much how I feel about upgrading the OL, as well. Would love to see them do it only thru the draft alone but I am afraid the circumstances may well not allow it. Most rookies will need time and help from others to develop. And as you said, guys like Scherff, Collins, etc highly unlikely to fall to 32 (or even within reasonable range for trading up) right about now.

        As for taking a TE relatively early, I am not advocating for any TE to be taken there but think the value would be too good to pass on should Walford fall to late 2nd (Pats could maybe use a player like Dennard to move up in the round). The argument here is that Gronk is just too important to the Pats offense and they lack a viable alternative/back up to him. People talk about getting a WR to stretch the field but the reality is Brady no longer has the arm to go deep. At this point in time, it’s Gronk’s presence that opens up the field for the Wrs and if he goes down, Pats offense would stutter when facing good D’s at the big stage, in the play-offs. Just not convinced Tim Wright is that guy to take over at TE should Gronk go down and Pats can always figure out a 2-TE formation with Gronk and Walford, who is a lot like a bigger, more physical Hernandez.

        Now, Walford isn’t exactly a Gronk clone, hardly anyone is, but is a pretty good mix of Gronk and Hernandez – an athletic TE, who can block and has a big wingspan and good hands. He comes from a sub-par offense in Miami, which has kind of helped keep him under the radar but may well be better than most TEs from last year. Actually, I wouldn’t be shocked if he became the #1 TE in this draft after the combine, which would naturally mean he won’t be available for the Pats at 64. Time will tell.

        • carlo strada says:

          Searching great value on any of the 2 top TE available on the draft is very plausible, i have a very similar line of thinking regarding to the topic (our offense falls down to pieces if Gronk goes down again..). I wouldnt be shocked at all if Belichick grabs a falling Maxx Williams at 32 overall (or Walford later on the 2nd round)

  6. Jeff says:

    Any opinions on DT Kaleb Eulls?

    • Ryan says:

      I think that Eulls is a good target for either our pick at the end of the 4th or the beginning of the 6th. He won’t get after the quarterback much but he looks to be strong against the run for years to come. Picking him at the end of the 4th would be closer to his actual value, while picking him at the top of the 6th would rely on his absence at the combine to lower his value a bit.

      • steve earle says:

        Another option in this range could be Markus Hardison. Here is a DT that does get upfield and is still strong vs the run. Had a very strong Sr year.

  7. Joe Blake says:

    OK, so I am off topic, I’m tired of hearing and reading about the: who is best discussion: Montana, Bradshaw or Brady. First, Bradshaw is out of the discussion: he threw a total of 84 passes and completed 49 in his 4 SB wins. He had 9 TDs and 4 picks. Nuff said. Montana had 83 completions in 122 attempts and a QB rating of 127.8 feasting on the Bengals and Dolphins horrible defenses. 11 TDs passing and 2 running with no intercepts. He had 14 hall of fame teammates. Brady’s numbers: 164 completions in 247 attempts in 6 SBs. 13-4 TD to intercepts and QB rating of 95.3 and no HOFers to work with. Brady: Best of All Time.

    • Joe Blake says:

      OK so Montana had only 5!

    • Bom Trady says:

      Also dont forget for the 2 sb wins he also had rice who cheated and used stickum an illigal substance to gain a edge so def BRADY wins.


    • td says:

      Almost impossible to compare QB’s even from 20 yrs ago. Joe had two WR’s that could go to the house at any time and that west coast offense started the trend of throwing short passes like running plays and it took defenses 10 yrs to adjust. Also the cap era hadn’t hit nor unrestricted free agency. Rice is really looking like a fool as will Aikman, Lewis, Johnson and Chris Carter for their idiotic blathering on ESPN once the NFL “investigation” is done.

      While Brady is one of the greatest, it’s still a big time team sport and he could not have done it without all the unheralded players: Troy Brown, Patten, Givens, Wiggins, Matt Light, etc. IMO the only reason he doesn’t have 6 rings is because the defense let them down vs the Giants both times, almost did it this time. It’s amazing how elite teams immediately attack the weakest link in a defense, ala he horrible time Arrington had.

      • Joe Blake says:

        Agree on all counts… PS: let’s move on from numbers 25, 25 and 30… Arrington, Ryan and Harmon the high hurdler!!

        • Dylan.C says:

          Yes Arrington had a bad game in the Super Bowl, but that is more because of a bad match up against a much larger wide receiver. He has never been good in that kind of role. But lets not forget the great work he has done against smaller receivers like TY Hilton who he basically shut down in both colt games.

          Also, the catch with Kearse was a complete freak. Butler made a nice play to tip the ball and by pure luck it landed in his lap. Sure Harmonn could have made a play when Kearse was on the ground but I think he was probably trying to avoid a late hit penalty thinking the pass was already incomplete. Imagine if the ball was incomplete and then he came in and got a personal foul penalty on the late hit?

        • Jeff says:

          Arrington did have a rough superbowl, but did great overall this season. Also, let’s not forget his great performance about Victor Cruz in a previous Superbowl. I still like him against those smaller, shiftier guys. Ryan and Harmon don’t need to be cut, they just need to be treated as depth options. At this point, seems like they are best penciled in as backups and only spot starters as people go down. They’re good enough on their rookie deals, however, to be worth keeping around.

  8. Kevan says:

    TE maybe, probably a WR, defenitely an Olineman or two, Dlineman for sure maybe 2, maybe a LB and probably one DB. I think pats will draft a Longsnapper for sure, that dude from Navy.Great season everyone so happy we got over the hump. So happy another miracle catch didn’t destroy us. I would have been heartbroken forever. Anyway there is no reason to think Pats can’t do it again. Let’s retain some players add a few have a good draft and get to work. The 5th Super Bowl will end any discussion or debate on the greatest. Once more into the fray huh? Oh yea, Mcgregor fights for that title in July.

  9. Ryan says:

    Not related to this article at all, but some intriguing players weren’t invited to the scouting combine. Most players who aren’t at the combine should be considered more as undrafted free agents than draft picks, but some of the players who missed out should still be considered come draft day. Out of those prospects not attending the combine, here’s who I’m looking for the Patriots to target in round 6 or later:

    WR: Austin Hill, Levi Norwood, Jordan Taylor
    TE: Westlee Tonga
    OG: Miles Dieffenbach, Kyle Costigan
    DE: Deion Barnes
    DT: Xavier Williams, Kaleb Eulls, Darius Kilgo
    ILB: Jeff Luc
    S: Erick Dargan

    These names may seem fairly obvious in terms of players “snubbed” by the combine selection process, but I saw them as players worth drafting before the combine decisions came out. Because their draft stock will definitely take a hit as a result of not participating in the combine, some of these players will become great values as teams are reluctant to draft a player without workout informaiton. A player such as Austin Hill who may have been taken in 5th could now be available in the 6th.

    • Russell says:

      Xavier Williams DT is a solid prospect from smaller program, a shame he’s not at the Combine!! Jeff Luc is anoher guy I like, and along with Williams have been in m early Patriot Mocks.

    • acm says:

      bummer – was looking forward to seeing DTs Williams and Kilgo.

      • Ryan says:

        While it’s true that we won’t see them at the combine, if the pats bring them in for workouts or go to their pro days they could pick up a gem in the later rounds as team do tend to undervalue those excluded from the combine.

  10. J H TARBORO says: reports that they have signed 12 players to future contracts. One of most interesting players to me is WR Jonathan Krause ( sub 4.4 slot receiver). Biggest why? DE J.Bequette who’s been here for 4yrs now and spent this year on the practice squad.

    • Bom Trady says:

      i still dont know y we have Bequette. dude is a straight up bum. i would rather have michael sam as a practice squad guy who can actually contribute if one of the 2 DE starters go down.

  11. J H TARBORO says:

    NFL Network has a list of notables who aren’t invited to NFL Combine, some may suprise you, if you watched the Senior Bowl and their practices, the East/West Shrine,NFLPA Bowl, and the Medal of Honor Bowl.

  12. Jeff says:

    One way to figure out draft needs is to pick out players you’d like to replace via the draft. Using that strategy, I came up with the following positional needs:
    OL – 2 – replace Connolly (free agent) and Devey (unproductive)
    WR – 1 – replace Tyms or Dobson (both unproductive this season, unlikely you’ll really want both of them on the roster next season, and if they really come out strong, you can move on from Amendola or carry an extra receiver)
    DL – 2 – replace Branch and Ayers (both free agents)
    LB – 2 – replace White and Casillas (both free agents)
    In addition, if you have additional picks (more than the 7 above), it would make sense to grab a TE and another OL late to challenge Wendell/Kline and Hooman who are entering their final contract years and could represent cap savings/upgrades if youngsters can step up during training camp.

    • Russell says:

      I agree Jeff, nice job. I would guess BB will bring in 3-6 undrafted Olineman, and draft two. I never liked the Dobson pick, the guy’s work-out habits were/are poor in the wieght room, and other issues. Tymns is cheap at $495K, Dobson is not at nearly 1 mil. next year.
      So I see anywhere from 6-8 open positions on the 53 man roster.
      2-3 -Oline
      1-2 -Dline
      2- LB’s Mayo contract/injury rehab will effect this area greatly.
      1- WR likely not a slot guy
      My mock has a LB early, but I don’t think he is on the board at #64;

      OLB Lorenzo Mauldin
      DE Henry Anderson
      OC/G B.J. Finney
      (Comp. pick)- DT Xavier Williams
      (tampa 4th)-OG Ali Marpet
      OLB Davis Tull
      (tampa 6th)- WR Kenny Bell
      (Tenn. 7th)- QB/WR Devin Gardner

    • Russell says:

      You may enjoy to make your own mock.

  13. Dylan.C says:

    Remember when everyone was demanding we drafted Luis Nix the III this time last year haha?

  14. Russell says:

    Cleveland is loaded in this draft, and MAYBE a trade parter for the Patriots.
    The Patriots 1st pick (32)
    Clevelands, 2nd (44) ,4th (119) and a 4th in 2016.
    This would give Cleveland 3 first round quality prospect picks, and still have a 3d, 4th (112) 5th, 6th (188) 6th (202) and a 7th.

    • Russell says:

      Cleveland would only gain 8 picks here, (44) to (32),but if they were drafting a player, that would be grabbed in those 8 picks, then maybe.
      QB Manziel was a mistake last year.

  15. steve earle says:

    Lots of thinking we will get two comp picks. If we do it gives BB far more leverage to deal with. I’m nor sure of moving up in the 1st but after that anything goes. One thing to consider is how many guys that we draft can we keep after the last cuts when the cap numbers really count? It might serve us better to move up two or three times in the mid rounds for players Bill really likes then to spend all our picks on guys destined to be waved, lost to other teams, or on the P sqd. Udfa looks to be an area with a lot of potential this year because of the talent drop off after the 3rd round. Some guys who could be 5th or 6ths will just slip through the cracks imo.

    • Russell says:

      Great point Steve, I think you will see 6-8 opening’s on the 53 man roster, next year. I also would not be surprised if trades involved picks for next year, to plan ahead.
      I would not expect to many free agents signed that are costly, IF we sign our guys, money will be tight.This may lead to more drafted / undrafted guys making the team.

  16. Dylan.C says:

    Don’t sleep on Tyler Gaffney people! 6’1 227 lbs and had some great games at Stanford.

    • Russell says:

      I agree Gaffney is a great prospect ! The Patriots had to have seen him when watching tape on OT Cameron Fleming, and I’m sure thats why BB jumped at the chance to get him!

    • steve earle says:

      I agree too and just another reason not to look to hard at RB in the draft. Another RB on the P sqd is White who is insurance in case Vereen walks though I hope he doesn’t. Still with a year under his belt and another full camp coming up White may be ready to step up.

      • Dylan.C says:

        Vereen hardly played a snap his rookie year so I wouldn’t be surprised to see white make a similar jump

        • steve earle says:

          But as I recall Vereen was injured his rookie year. Still I think White has potential but would rather resign Vereen as the sure bet.

      • Jeff says:

        The Pats are all set with traditional backs – they may even look to trade one of them at some point. However, with White as the only true passing back, a position that they lean heavily on and is important in many of their big games, I’m not sure how comfortable they would be just hoping that White emerges after showing almost nothing all season. For that reason, I think there is still a chance they look to re-sign Vereen. If not, maybe someone like Joe McKnight comes on their radar on a 1-year deal? I’d think they’d prefer a free agent to a rookie if they don’t have full confidence in White.

  17. Michael says:

    I would ecstatic if NE landed this guy. However, I feel that he’s going to get taken long before NE picks.

  18. steve earle says:

    My home PC is down so I’m at the library. Have several thoughts in response to ideas here this week.
    1st I’d love us to take AJ Cann at #32. We could then pkg our 2nd #64 with the 4a and move up in the 2nd to take someone like Markus Golden DE/OLB or Arie Kouandjio OG. As far as Hunter goes I wouldn’t jump off a high place but would still rather take an o-linemen like Cann. I would say the same about Michael Brown only because I think the OG/OT spot would allow for a stronger overall draft. And to BB, please resign Revis and McCourty.
    JH wants Bill to make a big splash again. Can’t see how unless we lose Revis and/or McCourty so save the big splash for another time please. I fully agree, and I too am still mad about the Easley pick with our 1st last year. If some othewr team really wants a player with injury history for all means let them have him. Pretty sure Slater returns also.
    I’m also not interested in a WR or RB at all in this draft unless as UDFA. Both positions are well stocked going into the new year and keep in mind Dobson will be returning from IR. Those writing him off bring to mind how some wrote Gronk off this time last year. The point to take from that is BB likely hasn’t given up on him as yet.
    I believe Mayo will restructure or let go. Trade is probably not an option because of two years of injuries. If he does return he will probably start the year on pup list.
    Does Hooman return or will Bill decide Flemming will be a hybred OT/TE?
    James Christian thinks Brandon Scherff @ 32. Not likely imo. Bill would have to move up into top half of the 1st rd I would expect. Nice thought though. And In Jame’s mock I didn’t notice a DT anywhere and why the heck a RB at #97? And please why another WR we don’t have room for?
    In short this draft is reasonably deep at our positions of need so it makes sense to stock up where it will do the most long term good and still allow us to resign our key free agents. I’m convinced two day one starters at OG will do more good then a dozen WRs or RBs. It will keep teams from making our offense one dimensional when we need balance most. Look where all the pressure on Brady came from all year. Right up the middle. That has to stop.

    • J H TARBORO says:

      Future Contracts Patiots ’15
      RB Dion Lewis ( 5th rd. pick for Eagles 2011 out of Pitt )
      DT Antonio Johnson (5th rd. pick for Titans 2007 out of Miss St. )
      LB Rufus Johnson ( 6th rd.pick pick for Saints 2014 out of Tarleton St.
      Exclusive rights FAs ( must be offered a contract or go. )
      WR Brian Tyms
      WR Greg Orton
      LB Cameron Gordon
      LB James Morris
      FB James Devlin
      Under contract RBs (L.Blount,B.Bolden,and J. White) Camp to compete J.Gray,T.Gaffney,and Dion Lewis
      Ridley and Vereen are probably going bye bye!
      McCourty ( Can he be upgraded or replaced? ) yes! absolutely
      Revis ( love what he’s done for us, but is he worth 20mil and 25mil. cap hit?
      Sign the kicker or franchise him.
      OLB or ILB? or both
      let not forget Free Agency, that how we built our team last year.

      • Dylan.C says:

        Please do tell how McCourty can be upgraded or replaced?

        • J H TARBORO says:

          Free Agency or the draft Dylan!

        • steve earle says:

          @JH , I was going to say very much what acm said in his reply about McCourty upgrade. I believe we keep McCourty after all the grass is not always greener over there.

      • acm says:

        D-Mac is way too deeply integrated into the Pats system. If they can’t reach a long-term deal, he’ll get slapped with the tag.
        And I can’t think of any UFA at SAF that would be a good replacement let alone an upgrade. Don’t get me wrong, D-Mac is no Earl Thomas but he is no slouch either. Plus, it would take a good couple of seasons to have a new player properly learn the position within that system.

        • Dylan.C says:

          Exactly how I feel. He is definitely the second best center-field type FS in the league after Earl Thomas. He may not make allot of flash plays but part of the reason you don’t usually notice him on TV broadcast is because he is rarely out of position and doesn’t get tested allot. You also can’t undervalue his flexibility to come down and play man to man in some situations. He graded out #1 in pff last year and i think somewhere like 6-7th this year, he is a team captain, has been named all pro twice, he is only 27, and has only missed 3 games in 5 years. Most importantly he embodies the Patriot way and is a class act on and off the field.

          You don’t just find safety’s like that on the street or in the draft. The next best FA is probably Rahemm Moore and there is no way you can plug in a rookie and expect him to play that way for a few years and that’s assuming they develop.

          Easy answer here is the franchise tag with a long term contact in mind. He will probably command something along the lines of 5 years $40 million (Earl Thomas is 4 years $40 million).

    • nick says:

      steve, lets consider first that we just won the super bowl with basically zero contribution from our first 3 picks. thats encouraging to me from a team stand point. the more i go over it in my head, the more i see the value in drafting o line high, and by that i mean maybe moving up. i love a guy like jordan phillips or maybe even an armstead as it looks like he’s dropping a bit on boards, but it just seems the most important move for our team would be o line. its an obvious hole, but i just feel like we can make up the holes on d and not as much on o. bottom line, its either d line or o line first 4 rounds, with maybe a linebacker in there. the problem is, i think we will have to move up to get the better end of the talent in those 4 rounds. heres who i love that are reasonable picks for pats considering their position:

      Lynden Trail

      if we can get some semblance of two of those guards and two d lineman, we are in good shape

      • steve earle says:

        Boy oh boy nick I agree. I would add a couple names to your list.
        Marcus Golden DE Missu. Some describe him as a quick twitch DE and I agree but that is not the sum of his game. He has excellent recognition, gets off blocks quickly and pursues and destroys like a heat seeking missile. I could see him with our #64
        Austin Shepherd ROT Ala. A great power run blocker for Bama. Has some difficulty with outside speed rushers but a move inside to RG would be a great value for a 3rd imo.
        And now sense we agree so well all we have to do is get BB on board.

        • nick says:

          the problem i keep running into steve, and maybe you have some thoughts, is that although i think we should go o line early and often, i do think the talent lags for d line after the first 3 rounds. any guys 3rd round and later that you are looking at?

        • Russell says:

          Xavier Williams DT a solid prospect 4th round.

        • nick says:

          thanks, russell. will look more into him

      • steve earle says:

        yet again we are seeing things through the same eyes it seems. Yes the drop off after the 3rd rd and before our pick there is obvious and looks to me to be both o-line and d-line so it’s a case of pick it. I’m clearly leaning to fix our o-line first but if others think d-line I understand. I’m concerned to keep Brady as clean and hit free as possible. Having a really strong run game will do great things along those lines too. So for me it’s 2 o-line early.

  19. Dylan.C says:

    I also really like Preston Smith as the Nink replacement.

    • steve earle says:

      Watching Smith’s highlights I was less then impressed. He got to high to often and driven off the line and spent much of his time chasing the plays. Nuff said.

  20. Dylan.C says:

    I definitely am in the camp that thinks the Pats need to get Revis and Dmac back. I think Revis 3 years $45 million & Dmac 5 years $40 million would be reasonable. The safety franchise tag is also a pretty reasonable bet of Dmac.

    Assuming they do come back I think the Pats need to focus their attention on beefing up the lines on both sides of the ball. Interior O-Line has been weak for the last few years and Connolly is probably gone. We literally have no other pass rushers besides Jones and Nink and they have played the highest percentage of snaps of any DE tandem in the league over the last 3 years. At NT Wilfork may retire and even if he doesn’t he is on his way out and has been pretty average besides his outstanding games down the stretch in the playoffs. Hard to imagine he has much left in the tank and should certainly not be counted on to play anywhere close to 75% of the snaps going forward.

    I also recently read that the pats are projected to receive two compensatory draft picks, including one in the third round, bringing their total to nine picks. Assuming that does happen I think this team has to much young talent for there to be any shot in hell that nine draft picks make this roster. With that in mind, and the fact that we only have so many Brady years left, I fully support using some of those picks to move around in the late first through third rounds.

    I would love for a scenario like this where we trade up to get another pick in the early second round.

    1. Jordan Philips – NT of the future
    2a. Nate Orchard – Much needed edge rusher
    2b. Jeremiah Poutasi – Huge upside as a mauling guard

    I haven’t really had time to research the later rounds but I invision them double dipping at both interior o line and edge rusher. LB depth is also crucial and may become a priority if Mayo doesnt come back.

    • steve earle says:

      Not a bad mock and I’d like a couple high 2nds but have been unable to think of how? Any ideas?

      • Ryan says:

        I’d think that a package of our third-, fourth- and sixth-round picks could fetch a high second. It might not add up on the value chart, but three picks for a team’s second-rounder is legitimate value.

        • Dylan.C says:

          Yea basically what I was thinking. Especially if we have our 3rd, the compensatory 3rd, and TB’s 4th (start of the round). Those picks are all going to be very close to each other.

        • steve earle says:

          Maybe but all those picks to move up doesn’t leave us much to work with. And as you say the trade value chart isn’t even close so I wonder?

        • Dylan.C says:

          Maybe you trade down from the last pick of the first round to the early second round. It seems like every year some team wants to leapfrog the first few picks of the second round and overpays a bit to do so.

          Then use some of the middle round picks to trade back up into the second so you end up taking 3 2nd round picks and the compensatory 3rd round pick (which cannot be traded). They basically wouldn’t pick again until the very end of the draft but that would give them 4 solid picks in the second and third rounds and they always seem to find some good UDFA’s for extra camp bodies. That would leave them with 6 picks and I can’t imagine that many more people making the 53 man roster anyway.

          Definitely reaching a little bit but gotta get creative sometimes! It also depends allot on how the draft board shakes out and if they even see the second round as a “sweet spot” worth taking so many picks in.

  21. Jeff says:

    If the Pats try to trade Mayo, will there be a market? What would they get back, a 3rd?

  22. Chris says:

    Patriots will address interior of OL n DL. I also expect them to find a cheaper replacement for Mayo, kid i watched all year that caught my eye Paul Dawson ILB from TCU, this kid can flat out play in the middle, very similiar to Ray Lewis. Great speed sideline to sideline n with outstanding pursuif to football, would be a steal in 2nd or 3rd round.

  23. Joe Blake says:

    Any draft discussion would have to start with an understanding of the free agent situation. Does Solder stay? Will he restructure? He is not worth the $7+ million salary hit. Will Mayo stay? His cap hit is outragious! Will Revis take a discount? what are we going to do about Vince and McCourty? We will have these answers in advance of the draft, but right now its a WAG as to who is drafted. My guess: Solder, Mayo and Vince stay and take less. Brady’s salary drop goes to Revis who stays at a slight hometown discount and McCourty goes for the $$s. Given this scenario, and my takeaway from watching last years games, we need to shore up the offensive line, get a DT and an OLB/DE younger Niko type, as well as a SS. These are our primary position needs filled by FA and the Draft. The second tier needs are: a TE, a WR, a RB (my guess is Vareen goes for $$s elsewhere) and a DB.

    • acm says:

      Indeed – draft needs priorities will be determined by what happens or doesn’t happen in free agency.

      I am not gonna speculate on who stays and who goes but I think it’s safe to say, one way or the other, D-Mac will be back for 2015 as he is a prime candidate for the franchise tag.

    • PSW says:

      Just some experience eyes and ears of a New Yorker here; Revis never left a penny on the table, his every other year hold outs drove every one crazy here.(Not me I laughed at the Jets) But expecting him to give the Pats a discount is world class STUPID!!!!!!! with a capital PID!!
      Sorry just telling the truth.

  24. Tim says:

    As long as he’s not chasing a mobile QB maybe he’ll be all right. Also, thanks for the help with pronunciation.

  25. Jeff says:

    When thinking about defensive ends, is Chandler Jones best suited to be a left defensive end or a right defensive end? For those of us that would like to see Jones on this team past his rookie contract, this may affect the type of DE the Pats are looking for, especially out of a first round pick.

  26. Bom Trady says:

    GOD if the pats draft Dorial Green-Beckham, Arik Armstead, Jalen Collins, and Gurley. i would cream my pants so hard

    • Ugo says:

      Finally someone else points out Jalen Collins, the tall LSU corner that can cover. Have not seen anyone else or any other website mention him at all. He will fall because he spent too many yrs behind talented DBs at LSU. That is also the reason I think we can get him in rounds 4-6 depending on how well he does at combine and at the pro days. Whether Revis stays or goes the Patriots should come out this draft w/ 1 corner and 1 safety. If Revis stays Collins should be available exactly in the range of rounds that they should grab a corner. If Revis leaves and none is brought in in free agency, then they obviously should grab one much earlier.

      I really like Arik Armstead. Unfortunately it did not work out with his brother, watching this year was like watching a men among boys numerous times in many games. His strength size and quickness pops off the screen.

      DGB is definitely a prospect that I would love to see the Pats gamble on in the right round. If he falls to the fourth rd they should pounce. Anything earlier is too high of a gamble in my opinion. A number of really good receivers that you can choose from if they want to draft one early that do not come with half that baggage.

      Gurley is a great back and should do great things in the NFL once he heals. Not sure they will draft a back with the stable of backs that now have. Even with free agency looming they have a gluttony of running backs. Once again if he falls to the right round and the risk is mitigated I would love if they took a gamble on whether he regains his form.

      Would be as happy as a kid on Christmas morning if the Pats collect any combination and any number of the following positions in the first 3 rounds: OG, DT, DE

    • carlo strada says:

      Instead of DGB, give me Maxx Williams to pair with the Gronk, now that we currently have a short/mid passing offense i think this pair could be a hell on wheels for any defense who dares to stand in our path. I dont think a deep threat be that important as long as Mc D be calling the plays.

      • acm says:

        Agreed. I’d much rather have Max Williams than a WR early. Brady is beyond the time of his career where the deep pass is an important part of his game.
        Considering how essential a big TE is to the Pats offense, spending an early pick to add an alternative to Gronk on the roster would be a much better allocation of resources than taking another WR.

        • Daniel R. Martin says:

          ACM, what do you think of Jesse James TE, a massive, athletic specimen by all accounts. Underwhelming production thus far though.

        • steve earle says:

          @ Dan, My 2 cents on Jesse James. Yea he’s tall but I don’t think he is in the same level as Maxx Williams who I believe has much higher up side. Even so do we really need a Te mid round? Now if one of them slides into the lower rounds they could be a good value pick.

        • acm says:


          He has the size but don’t think he sticks out in any particular way than other good prospects and iirc reading, he is not a very good run-blocker for a guy his size. Agree with Steve that upside like his could be found late in the draft.
          Not saying he isn’t a player Pats should be looking at, just that I don’t think he should be a priority (i.e. targeted with one of the more valuable picks).

      • jim r says:

        Couple of different types of TE projects. Devin Gardner and Blake Bell. 6/7th round ?

    • steve earle says:

      Come on guys don’t let the sparkle and shine of WR’s and RB’s blind you to the real needs of this team.

  27. Russell says:

    Interesting article Mr.Gerken, you do a nice job “Scouting Prospects”. I have Odighizuwa as a 1st round guy as well, the bad news is I think he goes to Indy, or Dallas.
    I have two “binkies” this year myself; DE-Henry Anderson, and OLB -Charles Davis Tull.

  28. J H TARBORO says:

    Mike Gerken this was a great call to show this guy, during the Senior Bowl practices, Mike Mayock and the NFL Network staff raved about how freakishly athletic this guy was, and to be quite honest i forgot about him and i watched him play this year about 4 times and liked him. He may be in my next mock. Again great call!

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