Amongst all the talk of trading up for a top pass rusher, trading down for more value, the Patriots stood at #17 and selected Colorado offensive tackle Nate Solder. Solder is a tall (over 6-8) former TE with great feet and athleticism for the position. He’s always played LT which might suggest that Sebastian Vollmer will stay on the right side. I had Solder as my #4 OT in the draft but he suits the Patriots more than maulers like Gabe Carimi, who fell to 29, that I had ahead of him. I like the pick and the value there but I was somewhat surprised at first that they didn’t address the pass rush need by trading up for some of that top-15 talent. You can’t deny that OT is a need position for the Patriots though.
Patriots trade down again
With the #28 pick, the Patriots decided, as they so often do, that there wasn’t a player on the board that represented more value than a trade they had on the table. I actually agree somewhat, just because of the value of the trade. The Saints gave up their 2nd round pick (#56) as well as next year’s 1st rounder to get up to #28 and take Heisman winning running back Mark Ingram. If it wasn’t such a good value trade I’d be hugely disappointed that the Patriots didn’t stay put and take Muhammad Wilkerson who I saw as a great fit for the D-line. As it happens, he went two picks later to the Jets. We’ll see how he turns out first hand with him going to an AFC East rival. The Patriots now have three picks in the 2nd round – #33, #56 and #60. I’d expect more trades to be forthcoming when day 2 of the draft begins at 6pm EST, 11pm here in the UK.