Christopher Price looks at the significance of the Patriots drafting a lot of college captains again this year.
This season, six of the nine players the Patriots selected in the draft were collegiate captains: first-rounder Nate Solder, second-round picks Ras-I Dowling and Shane Vereen, third-rounders Stevan Ridley and Ryan Mallett (the latter of whom was a two-year captain at Arkansas), as well as fifth-round pick Lee Smith (another two-year captain).
However, after the draft concluded, Patriots coach Bill Belichick said that while the Patriots value many of the same aspects that come with being a team captain, they don’t go into a draft looking specifically for guys who have been college captains.
"We don’t go into the draft saying, ‘We want to get four team captains.’ We don’t go into the draft saying, ‘We want so many guys over 6-foot-4 or so many guys from East of the Mississippi or so many guys that whatever.’ You just look at each situation and try to make the best decision you can on it.
"I’d say those kind of things – I wouldn’t say they are purely coincidental, because certainly we value leadership and we value some of the characteristics that normally are associated with that type of position: respect and hard work and unselfishness and things like that. But we’re drafting football players and not everybody is a team captain. There are plenty of good players that aren’t, but there is something to be said for that."
- Patriots Today - Summing up the Pats' draft. (5.21 min. video)
- Karen Guregian sees the Patriots draft as a direct response to the team's playoff loss in January that had Tom Brady getting sacked behind an overwhelmed O-Line.
- Mike Reiss speaks with former Colorado offensive line coach Denver Johnson about New England first-round pick Nate Solder, and it's all good.
- Ian Rapoport is in Texarkana learning as much as he can about Patriots QB Ryan Mallett. Good story in here.
- Tom E. Curran believes the Patriots were serious about selecting Mallett, and not leaking the news early to try and flush out a trade.
- Christopher Price reports Tom Brady's foot is healing properly and should be ready for the season.
- Karen Guregian catches up with RB Sammy Morris, who can't do anything but take a 'wait-and-see' approach with his upcoming free agency.
- Mike Reiss consolidates the draft grades for the Patriots from around the league.
- Greg A. Bedard breaks down the roster after the draft.
- Jeff Howe answers his weekly Patriots mailbag: First-round pick Nate Solder's high potential made him the right choice.
- Mike Reiss relays a conversation Mel Kiper had with Tedy Bruschi about why Bill Belichick didn't draft an OLB in the first round.
- Mike Reiss notes analysts Charley Casserly, Mike Mayock and Charles Davis of NFL Network list the Patriots in the draft winners column.
- Mike Reiss recaps Monday's ESPN Boston radio show with Adam Jones, with the hot topic of discussion being the Patriots' 2011 draft.
- Tom E. Curran notes 7th round pick Scotty McKnight lost a college scholarship as a high school senior for violent journal entries aimed at an English teacher.
- Dave Campbell reports the NFL has argued that the lockout is essential and uses the words of players themselves to show that no harm has been done.
- Boston Herald Inside Track reports Matt Light runs a camp for underprivileged kids on his 300-plus-acre property in Ohio.
- Path to the Draft (NFL.com) Biggest draft winners: New England Patriots. (7.59 min. video)
- Nolan Nawrocki (Pro Football Weekly) Patriots, Browns land AFC's highest draft grades.
- Joe Fortenbaugh (Nat'l Football Post) 10 burning questions. Is Tom Brady pissed off?
- Bucky Brooks (NFL.com) Pats ability to maneuver helps produce another solid class.
- Jarrett Bell (USA Today) NFL Draft grades: Patriots B-
- Jason Cole (Yahoo! Sports) 2011 AFC Draft grades: Patriots C+
- Adam Schein and Peter Schrager (Fox Sports) Draft Grades: Patriots. C- (2.01 min. video)
- Jay Glazer (Fox Sports) Which NFL teams hit big on draft weekend and why did Bill Belichick select the"Charlie Sheen of this draft"?
- Clark Judge (CBS Sports) Coach's make-it QBs? Newton no, Locker maybe, Mallett yes.
- Gregg Rosenthal (ProFootballTalk) The AFC's biggest roster holes after the draft.
- Alex Marvez (Fox Sports) Most intriguing moves 2011 NFL draft.
- Post-draft notes. (Nat'l Football Post)
- Adam Caplan (Fox Sports) Future far from bright for many veterans.
- Clifton Brown (Sporting News) What's next after draft? One question looms large.
- Judy Battista (NY Times) Thank you for taking our team's call. Now please hold.
- Andrew Brandt (Nat'l Football Post) Draft business: only NFL business going.
- John Clayton (ESPN) Draft's over, but QB questions linger.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) 42 million watched at least one minute of the draft.
- Barry Jackson (Pro Football Weekly) Three-man set improves ESPN coverage.
- Mike Freeman (CBS Sports) GMs skirting rules by talking to undrafted free agents.
- Wes Bunting (Nat'l Football Post) Ranking the best undrafted players available: Defense.
- Evan Silva (ProFootballTalk) A look at the top prospects still available, after the draft.
- Steve Wyche (NFL.com) NFL planning special 9/11 tributes at Kickoff Weekend games.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Bin Laden's death could raise stakes in the lockout.
- Judy Battista (NY Times) Court considers NFL request for full stay.
- Wire services (ESPN) NFL files brief to court; players respond.
- Gregg Rosenthal (ProFootballTalk) NFL files brief, uses players' words on lockout against them.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Jonathan Kraft reiterates that the players stopped the talks and sued.
- Aaron Wilson (Nat'l Football Post) Jonathan Kraft blames players for work stoppage.