The 2010 NFL Draft is officially upon us!
As I mentioned after the season wrapped up, I won't be making any regular posts on Foxboro Blog until the 2010 season approaches. However, the NFL Draft is obviously plays a pivotal role in what we'll see from the Pats next season, so I didn't want to let is pass without at single post. I'm not going to go all Mel Kiper Jr. on you here. This is going to be a very cursory post that just covers the basics. I'll start with our 1st Round pick #22...
There's been five names that are routinely linked to the Patriots as potential first round selections:
Sergio Kindle, OLB, Texas - Personally, I'd love to see us walk away with Kindle tonight. Besides the fact that the Pats desperately need a pass-rusher, the name "Sergio Kindle" just sounds like somebody who'd be a UFC fighter cracking people's skulls. A Mayo/Kindle combo at linebacker? I like it!
Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State - The only person I'd rather see end up on the Patriots than Kindle. With Moss a potential flight risk, and a definite aging risk, it would be wise for New England to start grooming a new #1 target for Tom Brady. Plus, with Welker out, having Bryant as a #2 guy with Moss would keep defenses on their toes. There's character issues to deal with, but nothing I'd consider a deal breaker.
Kareem Jackson, CB, Alabama - Having a potential shut-down corner is never a bad thing. However, the Pats secondary isn't what I'd consider a top area of need at the moment. If Jackson's all that's available, I'd be ok with it, but would really love to see us plug a hole with a 1st round talent.
Ryan Matthews, RB, Fresno State - We all know that the Maroney Experiment was a gigantic fail in terms of solidifying a #1 back for this team. Would the Patriots consider using another 1st rounder to inject some life into the team's tepid ground game? My feeling is that that RB's are a crap shoot and major injury risks. I'd be hesitant to use up a 1st Rounder on one unless it was a guaranteed home run. Then again, anything that gives me less Maroney in my life would be a welcome turn of events.
Maurice Pouncey, C, Florida - This would be a solid pick, albeit a boring one. Not only would you solidify the line, but we'd gain some Mankins insurance if things go sour with his extension. Still, I'd really like the Pats to pick up a playmaker with their 1st pick.
Things I'd like to see...
The Patriots are notorious for wheeling, dealing, and trading down. If there was ever a draft to not trade down, it's this one. The 2010 Draft is DEEP, and the Patriots have plenty of holes to fill. They have the opportunity to draft 1st Round talent with their three 2nd Round picks, and I truly hope the Pats stand pat and make their selections this year.
When the day is done, I'd really like the Patriots to come away with a solid pass-rushing OLB, a DE to fill the void the Seymour left, and a RB, WR, and TE with some potential. The defense is the side of the ball that desperately needs work, while the offense could just use some more options to compliment Brady, Moss, and Welker.
Things I'd LOVE to see...
I doubt it will happen, and I know that defense is the priority, but Dez Bryant would give me a lot to be excited about not only this season, but for years to come. Brady to Bryant just has that "ring" to it. There's a lot of good LB's in this draft. There aren't many Dez Bryants.
Washington has a lack of picks early, while the Patriots have more than anyone. A 2nd Rounder for Albert Haynesworth would make my night. Can you imagine him lined up next to big Vince? Like Moss/Bryant, Wilfork/Haynesworth would be a nightmare matchup for anyone facing the Pats.
That's all I'll say for now. Everyone's ready to crown the Jets and the Dolphins, but it will be the Patriots who make the big leap forward throughout this weekend. Things are going to be completely different come Monday!