New England Patriots Links 4/27/12 - Fans' Dreams Become Reality; Patriots Trade Up, Draft Defenders

That's right Dont'a Hightower, you're a 1st-round pick and you now play for the No. 1 team in the AFC.

Bill Belichick speaks to the media following the first round of the draft Thursday night.

I thought we had a good day today. As usual, the draft always takes some interesting twists and turns. You just never know how it's going to go, but as the players came off the board we were able to execute a couple trades there and still hang onto our two second round picks, which I thought if we moved up I wasn't sure that we would be able to do that, but it worked out that way. Nick [Caserio] really did a good job of handling those. I felt like we got good value for them. [We] took Dont'a [Hightower] and Chandler [Jones]. Probably could have been in either order, but we felt like we would have a better chance to end up with both players if it went that way, not that we were sure we would get the second one but we thought we might have a shot at it.

Looking forward to working with both guys. Chandler is a little younger and has a little less experience coming out early; he missed part of the season last year. But very talented player, smart guy, works hard and really did a good job against some good quality players he faced in the last couple years at tackle in the Big East and in there on Syracuse's schedule. Of course, Hightower has been in a great program for a great coach; won a couple of national championships and has been the signal caller, leader of that defense. I think both players have some versatility, we'll work with them and figure out what works best for us and them. But excited to work with them; glad we have them on our team. I think they'll represent us well both on and off the field, at least that's our expectations.

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