"I slept on it. I still wish we drafted Marcus Martin. Interior-OL scares me and I had him rated higher. But again… I had Jimmy going around there, and I’ve kept my expectations low on a Mallett trade for months now. Still. Meh. I wanted beef." - Middlesex
"We have a beef delivery coming today, but i dont think it will be a center, OG and my bet would be Richardson or Halapio" - craziness@analltimehigh
How does everyone feel? The Patriots prepared for the future, with a chance to compete in the now as the team addressed its offensive line like it was their day three priority.
Three of the team's first four selections on day three are players who have a chance to compete on the offensive line and be productive.
To start off the day, the team selected Florida State center Bryan Stork, a 6'4, 315 lbs monster (much bigger than incumbent center Ryan Wendell), and is the reigning Rimmington Trophy winner as college's best center. He's a consensus All-American player who was in charge of the National Champion's offensive line calls. He has 39 career starts.
Stork is a candidate to immediately challenge for a starting spot due to his consistency. At his best, Stork can provide a Dan Koppen (in his prime) level of production, with a little more strength and toughness. At his worst, he's still better than Ryan Wendell's 2013 season. If Wendell is unable to rebound to his superior 2012 level of play, Stork is an NFL-ready player to step in on week 1.
With the Patriots compensatory selection at the end of the 4th round, the Patriots select offensive tackle and rocket scientist Cameron Fleming out of Stanford (seriously, he has a double major in Aeronautics and Astronautics). Fleming was a 39 game starter at right tackle at Stanford, which makes him a top graded back-up to Sebastian Vollmer, in case the soon-to-be 30 year old tackle continues to struggle with injuries.
At 6'5, 325, Fleming adds some more weight to the offensive line and takes over as the top back-up tackle that Will Svitek held down last season. Fleming helps as both depth and versatility because while he himself won't be playing guard, he frees up Marcus Cannon to slide in and compete immediately at right guard.
The Patriots' next pick is Florida guard Jon Halapio, who has been linked to the Patriots throughout the whole draft process. At 6'3 1/2, 325 lbs, Halapio continues the Patriots' trend of adding heavier linemen. He's an insanely tough and was a four year starter at Florida, playing through injury during his entire senior season. He's more likely a right guard, which lets him compete directly with Cannon and Dan Connolly for a starting role.
Halapio was expected to be a higher pick, but his injury senior year pushed him down, which makes him a potential candidate to have Foxboro Flu.
These three linemen are players who could potentially affect the week 1 starters. They are three players who could be future starters themselves. There's a chance that Dan Connolly and his 9th highest cap hit on the team won't make it out of the pre-season, and these three players could be reasons why. Stork and Halapio could be day one starters. Fleming allows Cannon to potentially be a day one starter and also provides necessary depth at tackle. This isn't even counting the team's high impression of guard Josh Kline.
The Patriots needed to add some bodies on their offensive line. Looks like they had a big delivery of beef set for Saturday.