Greg Gabriel (Nat'l Football Post) A look at the AFC East drafts: New England Patriots.
With the Pats playing more 4-man fronts Chandler Jones will be a great addition. Right off the bat he replaces Mark Anderson, who signed with Buffalo. Jones is just beginning to scratch the surface of how good he can be. I’m not as high on Dont’a Hightower as others. I agree he is a very good player but in the tapes I watched he didn’t make as many plays as he should. He may be best at OLB in the Pats scheme. I don’t know much about Tavon Wilson other than he is an athletic safety/corner. I’ll trust Belichick on that one. Jake Bequette is a tough, hardnosed overachiever. He may never start but he can be a good role player.
Bill Belichick addresses the media after the close of the 2012 NFL Draft.
It's a long day but hopefully a productive one. We can close the books here on the 2012 Draft. We started out the day in the fifth round; had an opportunity to move back and we felt like draft three players instead of one so we felt that was a better place for us to be so we did that in the fifth round.
Nate [Ebner] is a guy that is a big, fast safety that has been very productive in the kicking game, relatively inexperienced player that we think has a lot of good football in front of him. Of course, we have some good connections at Ohio State, people that have worked with him that obviously that played a part in it too, just in terms of his overall development and where we think he can be.
And then Alfonzo [Dennard] is a guy that we spent a lot of time on. Obviously the incident affected his draft position but certainly we're aware of it. We researched it, we found out as much as we could about it. Obviously, as an organization we're comfortable making the selection where we did.
[Jeremy] Ebert is a guy that we kind of got onto late; worked him out this past week. He's an impressive guy; does a lot of things well. We feel like he's versatile and be able to compete at that position for us as one of the younger players obviously that we have at that position. We have a lot of experienced guys there, we felt like adding a good, young player like him to that group would be good.
We've been banging away on the free agents now after the draft. We're working our way through that process, but hopefully we'll be able to add some players there that will be able to compete for roster spots and give us depth on the roster. We've been able to find a guy or two there pretty much every year, undrafted guys that have come in and made our team and contributed for us. Hopefully, our efforts there after the draft will be productive in some fashion as they have been in the past. We're working hard at that.
... We'll clean up the free agent stuff today, tonight hopefully and then move on to putting the team together and getting everybody out there, start the real formation of the team working on the field next week and in the coming weeks when the rookies come in.
- Paul Perillo discusses the curious trading from the Patriots.
- Erik Scalavino recaps the action on Day 2 and Day 3 of the Draft.
- Post-Draft Presser: Bill Belichick (9.02 min. video)
- Conference Call Transcripts: Tavon Wilson and Jake Bequette.
- Player Interviews: Tavon Wilson and Nate Ebner.
- Patriots Today - Final 3 on Day 3. (2.32 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Jake Bequette checks in. (3.28 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Meet DB Tavon Wilson. (2.15 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Dissecting Pats' second round. (2.51 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Jones, Hightower arrive in Foxboro. (2.53 min. video)
- Tom E. Curran explains why the Patriots did things differently in this draft -- giving up quantity for quality. (2.40 min. video)
- Chris Gasper writes about how the Patriots flipped their draft philosophy this year.
- Mike Reiss shares some quick-hit weekend thoughts from the Patriots and around the NFL.
- Karen Guregian grades the AFC East. Patriots earn an A-.
- Karen Guregian recaps rounds two and three of the draft, with the Patriots continuing to add reinforcements for the defense.
- Greg A. Bedard says that as a whole, the parts seem to fit the Patriots, and calls it a very productive three days for NE.
- Mike Rodak analyzes the Patriots 2012 roster, including the rookies but not the undrafted free agents whose deals haven't yet been announced.
- Karen Guregian reports the Patriots polished off the draft with three selections, and ending up with six of the first seven picks on defense.
- ESPN Boston posts a cool video of the Patriots calling DE Chandler Jones to select him 21st overall. (1.21 min. video)
- Mike Reiss reports draft analyst Todd McShay thinks Chandler Jones is going to be one of the real surprises from the 2012 draft.
- Greg A. Bedard thinks Chandler Jones could be the Patriots' version of Jason Pierre-Paul.
- Karen Guregian reports pass rusher Chandler Jones had a little trouble getting to Foxboro, but is pumped to be a Patriot.
- Mike Reiss notes Todd McShay thinks Dont'a Hightower "can get after the quarterback" and "really plays with great aggression."
- Rich Thompson says Dont'a Hightower believes his grasp of Nick Saban's system in Alabama will make for a smooth transition when training camp begins in July.
- Mike Reiss talks about the Tavon Wilson pick and the difference between the draft analysts and Bill Belichick.
- Tom E. Curran notes Bill Belichick doesn't care whether people think Tavon Wilson was off-the-radar, he's marching to the beat of his own scouting reports.
- Ron Borges writes about Tavon Wilson's motivation to keep working all the time.
- Tom E. Curran declares Nebraska corner Alfonzo Dennard not only has first-round talent, but first-degree stupidity.
- Rich Thompson reports DE Jake Bequette was very excited but not too surprised when he was picked by the Patriots in the third round.
- Karen Guregian connects the Patriots' 6th-round pick Nate Ebner with Ohio State asst. coach Mike Vrabel.
- Mike Reiss details Bill Belichick's explanation of the Patriots' thinking behind the trades.
- Greg Cameron catches Vince Wilfork recalling his emotions when he was drafted by the Patriots in 2004.
- Karen Guregian notes that for more than a decade, there weren't many better at getting the job done than Matt Light.
- Mike Reiss analyzes the Patriots' defensive-minded moves on Day 2 of the draft. (1.15 min. video)
- Mike Reiss posts the transcript of his weekly online chat.
- Mike Reiss reports the Patriots have already begun signing undrafted free agents: OL Jeremiah Warren (South Florida), OT Markus Zusevics (Iowa) and TE Brad Herman (Iowa).
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Getting to know new Patriot Tavon Wilson.
- James Walker (ESPN) Another Belichick second-round miss?
- Tony Pauline (SI) The NFL draft's steals and reaches. Tavon Wilson considered a reach.
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Pre-draft arrest left Alfonzo Dennard available for Patriots.
- Josh Alper (ProFootballTalk) Patriots go outside the box for Nate Ebner.
- Field Yates (ESPN) Recapping AFC East drafts.
- Dan Pompei (Nat'l Football Post) Sunday Blitz: The art of the deal, best value picks, what scouts think of other teams choices, and more.
- Peter King (SI) MMQB: Yet again, draft provides no shortage of stories to talk about.
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Not everyone got the memo about not tipping picks.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) For first time ever, player jerseys were customized on site.
- Jason Cole (Yahoo! Sports) NFL draft winners/losers. Belichick a winner.
- Chris Burke (SI) 2012 NFL Draft grades. Patriots: B-.
- Randy Covitz (Kansas City Star) Grading the NFL Draft team by team. New England Patriots: A-.
- Sam Farmer (LA Times) NFL draft: Off the clock and under review.
- Doug Farrar (Yahoo! Sports) Why they fell: Draft prospects picked later than expected.
- Doug Farrar (Yahoo! Sportrs) The best undrafted players of 2012: The offense.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Disconnect grows between former, current players regarding concussions.