It appears the draft beatnik world is beginning to catch up with something that's been discussed over here a lot lately - the fact that Shea McClellin and Chandler Jones is rising up draft boards when studying tape.
In some ways I'm not too exited since it means both players might fall out of reach for us.Both would be a great fit, I'm liking McClellin a bit more than Jones since I think he's more solid and does everything the Pats ask their OLBs to do well. However, you can't deny the upside of Jones, he could be a wonderful pickup in a few years time.
I've heard some buzz (lastly from Mayock and Casserly) that McClellin and Jones are being looked at earlier than you would think.
If this is true and indeed McClellin and Jones are picked earlier it could mean something of the following:
- other potential OLB/DE prospects like Nick Perry, Courtney Upshaw and Whitney Mercilus might fall to us.
- the posssibility that solid DT/DE prospects like Devon Still, Jerel Worthy, Kendall Reyes are there for us increases
- the possibility that troubled but no doubt talented cornerbacks like Dre Kirkpatrick and/or Janoris Jenkins are available when we pick also increases.
As I said I would love McClellin but I'm always leery about late draft buzz. It sometimes reflect true value but at times it's more a result of a hype that teams don't have the power to ignore.
A player like Courtney Upshaw for example is suffering through some knit-picking from scouts right now. However, he's a tough-nosed proven player with a winner mentality from a very good program. If he would fall to us I'm sure Belichick could make wonders with this kid. (Casserly has him falling to us with the 48th pick but I don't think that's reasonable by any stretch of imagination).
Personally, one of my favourites from recent film study is Devon Still. I think he would be a great fit for us at 3-4 DE/4-3 DT. He's quick off the ball and is stout against the run. If he is truly devoted to be a great player (and that is the only questionmark I have) I think he and the Patriots are a match made in heaven.
So, considering we keep our picks - and we all know the chances for that are slim:
If we´re getting out of the first with Courtney Upshaw and Devon Still look for this defense to take off in a few years and to some extent be instantly improved from day one.