Tag:New England Patriots
Posted on: April 25, 2009 6:38 pm
 

Browns Take Mack, Vikings Take Harvin

A couple of quick picks have me playing catch-up on the blog.

The Browns decided to actually make a pick and went with Cal center/guard Alex Mack, who has the size, strength and versatility to compete against the physical defenses in the AFC North. Mack is a safe pick, but is a bit anticlimatic considering the high profile names and the repeated trade backs. Still, games in this division are won in the trenches and this move improves Cleveland there.

As I reported on the blog last night, Percy Harvin had been jumping up draft boards over the past few days and goes to the Vikings 22nd overall. His agility and speed make a great deal of sense for an offense needing an infusion of playmakers at receiver and returner. It is a surprising move considering the Vikings preference for high character players after the Loveboat scandal a few years ago...

The Patriots traded back with the Baltimore Ravens, who selected Mississippi OT Michael Oher, a top ten talent who slipped to this point in the draft because teams are so overcome with the concerns about his personality. Ozzie Newsome once again shows why he's one of the NFL's best, aggressively moving up to get a player than should have been taken a long time before.


Posted on: April 23, 2009 5:12 pm
 

KC Likely to Continue Their Trading

 

Don't expect Scott Pioli to be finished with his trading now that he's sent future Hall of Fame tight end Tony Gonzalez to the Atlanta Falcons for a 2010 2nd round pick.

According to multiple sources throughout the league, he is actively looking to trade out of the 3rd overall pick with the hopes of acquiring a mid to late first round or picks throughout the second round as compensation.

The likelihood that he'll be able to trade out of the 3rd pick, however, is slim, meaning that running back Larry Johnson, guard Brian Waters and the rest of the Chiefs' 2009 picks could be up for auction.

Don't be surprised if Pioli even turns around the 2010 2nd round selection he received from the Falcons to get back into the 2nd round this year. The Chiefs, of course, previously gave up their 2nd round pick, the 34th overall for quarterback Matt Cassel.

As it stands now, the Chiefs have two picks in the first three rounds: the 3rd and 67th.

I have a feeling that somehow Pioli will manage to get another pick between these two by Saturday afternoon...

 

Posted on: April 22, 2009 1:18 am
Edited on: April 22, 2009 11:07 am
 

Belichick Laying Foundation for Trade Up?

With few sure-fire prospects in this draft, many of the teams drafting within the top ten have privately -- and in some cases, publicly -- stated their interest in trading down. Few teams have publicly stated their interest in moving up, but the rarely candid Bill Belichick offered some interesting thoughts on the situation in his annual pre-draft press conference.

I don't think I have ever been in a draft where we've had the potential flexibility that we have this year. Last year, we went in with the 7th pick and 62nd pick and I felt, at that time, it would be hard to move very far from those two spots, and in fact, we didn't. I think this year, if you go by the generic trade charts-the charts everyone uses or has access to-if you just do the numbers we could probably trade a combination of our picks in the first round and get up as high as 10. We already have three picks in the second round, so we could pick anywhere from the beginning of the round until the end of the round and then a couple more picks in the third, so I think it's really important for us to know the value of the board all the way through those first 100 players and be able to know where the opportunities are or aren't, and how we can make the most of them. Again, we don't always have flexibility to trade because you need a partner on that, but I'm sure there will be some discussions there and there already have been with teams that see our multiple picks and have interest in acquiring two for one. 

 

Belichick, of course, is not known for his particularly gabby, often light-hearted and carefree, terrifically insightful comments with media. 

With six of the top 97 picks, including three second rounders (34, 47, 58) Belichick's Patriots are in position to do whatever they'd like in this draft, and the reality is, with teams so eager to move out, the Patriots could move even further up than in a typical year.

With a lot of the talk out of New England focusing on cornerback Darius Butler from Connecticut, don't be surprised if the Patriots package some picks and instead move up for Ohio State's Malcolm Jenkins. Jenkins size, physicality, instincts and versatility could make him a perfect fit in New England.

Regardless of who they target, don't be surprised at all if New England makes some interesting, aggressive moves this weekend. For all of the talk that Scott Pioli and Josh McDaniels want to make a splash in the draft to begin their new legacies, Belichick is in better position to extend his own.

 

Posted on: April 19, 2009 4:39 pm
 

Gil Brandt Tips Chiefs' Hand?

 

 There has been much speculation as to what the Chiefs will be doing with the 3rd pick of the draft. Most have projected Kansas City to take Wake Forest linebacker Aaron Curry. Some, myself included, have projected them to take Virginia offensive tackle Eugene Monroe.

A new contender has arisen, however, in LSU defensive end Tyson Jackson.

Though many view Jackson as a significant reach for a top five pick, Gil Brandt didn't seem to think so, telling the listening audience of his Sirius radio program that Jackson is a "top five pick. Put that in the bank."

The comment, in itself, is interesting but not specific to any team -- other than those within the top five, of course.

But considering that Jackson fits best as a defensive end in the 3-4 and that there are only two teams using the 3-4 in the top five (Kansas City and Cleveland), the options for where Brandt believes Jackson is going are limited.

New Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli is facing the tough task of molding a team built around a 4-3 scheme into the 3-4 alignment he helped build in New England. Pioli has a track record of using first round picks on the defensive line, utilizing first rounders to build standout trio of Richard Seymour, Vince Wilfork and Ty Warren. Jackson has been described to me by veteran scouts as a virtual clone of the Patriots' Ty Warren.

Considering the widespread belief that the Browns are focusing on either USC quarterback Mark Sanchez or Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree with the fifth pick, Brandt would appear to be referring to the Chiefs with his comment -- not that it really matters. The Lions and Rams aren't likely to consider Jackson with the first two picks of the draft and no team is going to offer up the collection of picks necessary to trade into the top two picks to get ahead of the Chiefs to nab Jackson.

 

 

Posted on: April 2, 2009 10:58 pm
 

Pressure on Broncos Now...

 

Over the coming months, many will argue that the pressure is on Jay Cutler and the Chicago Bears to prove their union was worthy of the littany of picks given to the Broncos.

I believe the opposite.

In doing what many veteran league officials say is the cardinal sin of the NFL -- losing a young, franchise quarterback -- the Broncos have put themselves in the tougher position. 

If they take full advantage of the two first round and third round picks they received for Cutler, perhaps this move doesn't come back to haunt them.

History is on their side in some ways, as the last trades to involve this many high picks occurred when the Saints and Vikings essentially traded their futures for the rights to Ricky Williams and Herschel Walker. I don't have to tell you how those trades turned out.

In reality, however, the marginal success rate of first round picks makes this quite the gamble on the Broncos' part. They had an established quarterback. Now, they're likely to enter next season with their season riding on the erratic play of Kyle Orton and Chris Simms.

Yikes.

With five picks now within the top 84, Josh McDaniel is building this team like the Patriots have done -- via the draft. The Broncos have given themselves the flexibility to do whatever they'd like in this draft and an awful lot of flexibility in next year's, as well.

They'll need it, because in many ways, they're starting from scratch.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com