We all know Bill Belichick is hesitant to draft for need and our whole free-agency approach seemed to have served for insuring we at the very least have depth at some positions that are thought to be weak-spots or lacked bodies. The signings of Steve Gregory, Trevor Scott, Jonathan Fanene, Robert Gallery etc. likely means that BB and staff does not feel compelled to reach for a player from a certain position.
If we were to assume the Pats actually make their picks in the first-round, what kind of players might be there for us to take that represents great value?
I'm not so sure we will see us going for a pass-rusher or defensive help if we don't feel the players acquired represents value at that spot. On the other hand there appear to be several players that are sliding a bit late in the draft process. The reasons for them sliding varies but goes from legit character concerns to inexplicably losing all the hype that has surrounded them all-year until some scouts overthink things.
To me a couple of names stand out:
Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama (formerly of Florida) - this guy presents a lot of character concerns and that might cause him to fall to the early part of the second round but given his great ability as a corner we might be foolish not to take a chance on the kid if he's still there when we pick?
Courtney Upshaw, LB, Alabama - for some reason he's thought to be slipping down draft boards. If he's around when we pick he would undoubtedly present some value?
Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin - the major reason for him slipping a bit appear to be that he's not a weightlifting champ and that he's had some injury concerns. Could be a great center down the line
Devon Still, DE, Penn State - very solid player that would be a great piece as a 3-4 DE?