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Old 01-15-2012, 11:33 AM    (permalink
nepg
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I don't think McCourty's a safety. I think the off-the-street corners they've brought in have just been better than the off-the-street safeties and the Patriots found a way to maximize the talent on the field.

I think McCourty could be moved to S, and that would probably be a solid move with Ras-I coming back and having a nice group of corners in the late-first, early-second range (Minnifield?).

Also, from what we've seen, I think Edelman could make a legitimate move to mainly CB with a full off-season and I think he'd be really good there. He's got the size, quickness, tackling, and speed to do it.

Even if you do move McCourty to S, it's still a high-priority draft need with the injury issues Chung has dealt with his entire career so far.

I think Edelman could be a great receiver, but Brady's timing with him is just off for some reason. I just don't get it. When he's in the slot, he's just as good as Welker. But put him outside with Welker in the game, and Brady over/under throws him every time.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:36 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Vaylor View Post
I think it would be better to simply draft a Safety, or a CB who can convert to FS, and go with the McCourty-Dowling-Moore-Arrington at CB. Wouldn't mind taking a CB in the 3rd-4th round range to add depth.
Yeah, I look at the Pats' needs as S, WR, Pass Rusher, and DL - in that order (even with Lloyd). And I think the first 4 picks in the draft should be those positions. They have two after that, and I believe those two picks should be used to grab a blocking TE and a CB.

People keep saying C, but Connolly and Wendell have both been ******* awesome since Koppen went down. They're both capable of dealing with the huge and athletic linemen that get thrown at this team every year.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:36 AM    (permalink
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I think it all comes down to value.

If someone like Janoris Jenkins was available at 28(27) and BB was ok with his character concerns then I would be all for drafting him at CB and moving McCourty more into a safety role.

However I wouldn't want to reach on someone like Hosley or Minnifield simply because McCourty may be a better fit at safety and would rather draft Barron if available at the end of the first, even though I don't love him as a prospect.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:37 AM    (permalink
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I really, really like Mark Barron...but not as a guy who can play centerfield. It's a shame Lester decided to go back to school. He would have been a great fit here. TJ McDonald was a big non-declare too.

I'm really pretty down on this safety class in general. Trumaine Johnson could be a guy we target in the later rounds because his physical skills could project to either spot.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:41 AM    (permalink
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I really, really like Mark Barron...but not as a guy who can play centerfield. It's a shame Lester decided to go back to school. He would have been a great fit here. TJ McDonald was a big non-declare too.

I'm really pretty down on this safety class in general. Trumaine Johnson could be a guy we target in the later rounds because his physical skills could project to either spot.
Yeah Barron's not going to be the guy who will be deep in cover 1. But since Chung is made of glass we wouldn't be as exposed as we were with Ihedigbo. I've never been a huge fan of Barron but I would love a big nickel package with Barron, Chung and McCourty playing safety. So much versatility there.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:44 AM    (permalink
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To be honest, I would rather have Barron than Chung. Chung is a good player, but Barron basically projects to be a bigger and better version of him. I wouldn't spend a draft pick on something like that though, so that's off the table for me.

I'll be very mad if we draft a guy who can't can't cover. I can see it happening because we've got defensiveback downs syndrome, but I'll be very mad.
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:45 AM    (permalink
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I think there is a need on both sides of the line, interior C/G and DT on the other side of the ball. Would probably then look for a good young WR and another OLB somewhat in that order: some guys that interest me that may not be available without some maneuvering:

David DeCastro,g
Peter Konz, c
Devon Still, dt
Michael Brockers, dl
Kendall Wright, wr
Donta Hightower, lb
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:50 AM    (permalink
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I think there is a need on both sides of the line, interior C/G and DT on the other side of the ball. Would probably then look for a good young WR and another OLB somewhat in that order: some guys that interest me that may not be available without some maneuvering:

David DeCastro,g
Peter Konz, c
Devon Still, dt
Michael Brockers, dl
Kendall Wright, wr
Donta Hightower, lb
DeCastro's a pipe dream and IMO OG is a luxury pick at this point. Mankins is entrenched as a long term starter and Waters has outplayed him this year IMO. Plus Marcus Cannon is always waiting and of course Connolly can step in if needed.

I would be very tempted to take Konz if he were available at the pick but I don't see offensive line as a huge need.

I love the potential Brockers has as a 5 technique but he will probably be a very fast riser and be gone by when we pick. After that I don't love the defensive line prospects in the draft.

Wright would be a nice choice at WR and Hightower is someone i would look at in the second to fill Ninkovich's role.

However the main focus in the first round needs to be in the defensive backfield.
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Old 01-15-2012, 04:19 PM    (permalink
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OG isn't a need. Cannon projects there with an off-season to learn the position and Waters might come back. Even if Cannon isn't ready to go, Wendell has looked good at OG when he's been asked to step in. The team simply has no needs along the OL. Not starters, not depth. They've got (comparative to the rest of the league) good to great starters and great depth at every position and they're also pretty young.

DL... I don't know. They looked really good with basically 3 NTs playing a 3-man front against Denver and I wouldn't be surprised to see them continue that. If they can add a more talented player to that group, I'd be all for it. Dontari Poe, Wilfork, and Love lining up... All 3 command a double team. I think Belichick has had this crazy idea for awhile now... A 3-4 with 3 NTs. That's why we've seen him bring in Brace, Deaderick, Pryor, Love, and Warren... And I LOVE the idea.

I'd be OK with them moving McCourty to that centerfield job. If Belichick thinks he can be his Ed Reed...why not? They haven't had trouble finding talented corners (getting them to execute with confidence has been another issue since Hobbs/Samuel).

I'd absolutely use a draft pick to get a guy just like Chung, but healthy. **** Chung at this point. If he's healthy on a given day, he can be the nickel safety. But I'd be happier with a playmaker like McCourty and a smart, sturdy SS like Barron back there in base formations. If Ras-I can get and stay healthy, they'd have a really nice secondary without making any other moves.

Also, with Barron/Chung, remember that, outside of Meriweather who sucked and maybe Tebucky Jones, they've never really had a guy that was a centerfield type of safety. Geno and Rodney/Milloy were basically the same player. And that same player is what Barron/Chung are (except both are infinitely more talented than Geno).

I'd be OK with them basing the order of S, WR, DL, and Pass rusher being picked on value, but I feel pretty strongly that those are the positions that need to be filled in the first two rounds of the draft regardless of free agency and intrapersonnel movement.
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Old 01-15-2012, 04:28 PM    (permalink
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I'd be OK with them moving McCourty to that centerfield job. If Belichick thinks he can be his Ed Reed...why not?
Totally agree. If Belichick thinks McCourty can be the best free safety in NFL history, you're absolutely right...why not put him back there!
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Old 01-15-2012, 04:31 PM    (permalink
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Totally agree. If Belichick thinks McCourty can be the best free safety in NFL history, you're absolutely right...why not put him back there!
Belichick's been looking for his Ed Reed for the longest time, man. Most of them have been so bad, they don't even see the field. But I don't hate that he keeps trying. If he moves McCourty to FS, that's probably the best chance to get his man he's ever had.

It's weird because a lot of CBs will fight that move, but McCourty seems to want to move to safety. And I think that's the biggest thing. The guy wants to move to that position.
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:50 AM    (permalink
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Wright would be a nice choice at WR and Hightower is someone i would look at in the second to fill Ninkovich's role.
Wright has speed (and burst), but I wonder how that will work out for us.

Hightower can basically play any position on the defense we need him to. I can see him being a high 20s pick, which may mean we will have to think about someone else. He's a lot faster on tape than I remember live a lot of times.
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Old 01-17-2012, 06:03 PM    (permalink
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NFL.com posted their mocks. Four to be exact.
This is what they came up with:

http://www.nfl.com/draft/2012/mock-d...facebook_draft

-FLETCHER COX/CHASE MINNIFIELD
-ANDRE BRANCH/CHASE MINNIFIELD
-COURTNEY UPSHAW/DONTARI POE
-FLETCHER COX/ALFONZO DENNARD

Thoughts?

Oh, and they have us picking 32nd :)
(49ers @ 31)
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Old 01-19-2012, 05:30 AM    (permalink
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Upshaw and Dennard won't be there when we pick.

And Matthew Jones drafted both Minnifield and Branch in the forum mock, so there's that :) Although honestly if we draft Minnifield with the 27th pick it will be deflating. We need an impact OLB/DL/Safety, not another zone CB.

I also think Konz would be a good pick there as well if he's available. If the remaining time Brady has with the team is going to be predicated on how well the O-Line plays, it'd behoove us to have an 'elite' unit.
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Old 01-19-2012, 09:29 AM    (permalink
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I like Fletcher Cox a lot. We avoided taking a similar fit for our defense last year in Cameron Jordan, but I really want to get some athletic ability along the defensive line if we can't find a way to get someone like Brockers. Those guys are going far higher than we're picking these days.

We've touched on it a bit before too, but I like Poe some. Brockers coming out hurts his stock a bit, so if he lasts until our pick that's an interesting way to get a legit two gap five technique. There's a few things that make me nervous with him, but he can do a lot of things other guys just can't with his size and strength.
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:46 AM    (permalink
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I love the idea of Poe next to Wilfork. Poor man's Ngata in his size playing 34 DE.
I loooovveeeee ittttt
Desc mentioned it, and I agree, that BB is trying to set up a DL of all NT's (or NT sized DL)
Poe will definitely be fit the bill perfectly
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:51 PM    (permalink
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It'll be interesting to get a look at some of these defensive backs in these Senior Bowl practices. I'm having a hard time flipping the switch to talent evaluation with the season still alive, but I'm not complaining whatsoever haha.

Markelle Martin and Georga Iloka passed the eyeball test, supposedly. Iloka played pretty well, supposedly. I liked the little bits I saw out of Harrison Smith too. Martin is probably the best fit out of those guys in terms of what we need, but Smith may be my favorite. Really like the way he plays and I feel like I underrated him as an athlete a little bit.
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Old 01-24-2012, 12:08 AM    (permalink
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It's kind of sad were still talking about drafting DBs with how many weve taken over the last five years. Then again, we STILL have yet to try and get an impact pass rusher so maybe its not that bad? I think Poe is real long shot to be anywhere near us at that point in the draft but I'm with Nalej, would be great to add another big capable body next to Wilfork.
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Old 01-24-2012, 01:05 AM    (permalink
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I've been a big Martin fan for awhile now. I don't think they've drafted DBs that have any lack of talent. They have just had a ton of problems with injuries and mismanaging some of the veterans (Page, Sanders, Bodden?).

This defense would look infinitely better with James Sanders back there making sure everyone knew their assignments. I was disappointed when they cut him and it's had a huge affect on the defensive performance this year.

The Pats need to add two safeties and a corner.
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Old 01-24-2012, 04:10 AM    (permalink
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Trying to avoid thinking about the Super Bowl, so I'm reading scouting reports ;)

I agree, losing Sanders has really hurt. Communication is crucial and we're out of place a lot in the back end.

What do you guys think of Dre Kirkpatrick as a FS if he drops?
This scouting report looks promising: Range, good instincts, good tackler. I think it's unlikely he'll drop as far as 27, but there just aren't any safeties that look like they'll make an appreciable difference in either the draft of free agency.

Another CB that looks like a possible position switch is Trumaine Johnson, although would probably be quite a project. Last week we worked out five DBs for future contracts, so that might clue us in where we focus on the draft (again.) We just can't seem to coach these guys up.
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:15 AM    (permalink
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I could see Kirkpatrick at safety. He'd be there if they didn't have Lester and Barron.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:57 AM    (permalink
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I am really liking either Martin or Iloka in the second now for the Pats. Martin could be a true FS and let Chung play in the box or Iloka can do either and gives more versatility. Harrison Smith I like in the 3rd round.

I really don't like the idea of Kirkpatrick in the first to play safety. Not saying he couldn't do it but with McCourty who has played safety this year and I remember people saying Dowling may be better suited to safety I think we have enough CB/S tweeners
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:07 AM    (permalink
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Agreed. I like the idea of adding Martin. I've had a little bit to watch some Martin and think he would fit well. Mainly, especially, next to Chung.
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Old 01-24-2012, 10:40 AM    (permalink
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If Kirkpatrick drops, I'm taking him and asking questions about his position later. Really talented guy. He might be a bit overrated a shutdown type guy, but he displayed REALLY good instincts and a great ability to be a factor in the run game in the National Championship. He has some character things with his arrest, but I would still take him.
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:45 AM    (permalink
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(My first ever mock; this is how I think BB will draft, not who I would want.)

27 Ben Jones, C
Rational: A reach here, but Konz will be gone. Texans will not resign their FA center, Ravens need to replace Birk, meaning there will be competition for the top centers in this draft class. BB will draft a player earlier than he projects (Vollmer, Mankins) if he feels he can't get equivalent value later on.

31 M. Martin, Safety
Rational: We always trade this pick; possible trade partners, Seattle or Washington for Tannehill. However, Ravens and Packers always like to trade down too, so there may not be anyone to trade with. Going to be largely dependant on how the board develops. Regardless, we'll pick here or top of the second anyway and take one of the top safeties in the draft.

48 Brandon Thompson, DT
Rational: Will BB ever draft an OLB/DE prospect early? My answer is no, that's why we won't see someone like Jones or Branch in a Patriot uniform. If Jared Crick falls maybe that's the pick here instead. I honestly don't know if we would go CB here again, but with Dowling and Mccourty (regression notwithstanding) maybe BB thinks we don't need another 2nd round CB.

64: Harrison Smith, Safety
We double up on our biggest position of need. Safety play is problematic league wide though so there may be a run early on safeties.

3rd round:
Brandon Boykin, CB/KR/PR DB depth, and we need to upgrade the return game.

Didn't draft any WR as I think we'll fill WR need in free agency, and well Brady doesn't like rookies :)
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