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Resetting the Patriots’ draft picks in 2018

The Patriots have their most valuable draft capital since 2012

NFL: Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Starting with the Patriots' claim of Martellus Bennett off of waivers a couple of weeks ago, the final pieces towards determining the compensatory pick selections were determined. Barring any last minute surprises (the comp pick formula is both complex and hidden to the public) the Patriots will receive 2 compensatory picks in the 2018 draft, a 4th rounder for Jabaal Sheard and a 7th rounder for LeGarrette Blount.

Prior to the season, the Patriots were projected by to receive 2 compensatory picks in the 4th and 5th rounds, but the claim of Martellus Bennett changed the cancellations. Once Bennett no longer qualified as a comp pick free agent (because of his week 10 release before the deadline) he was removed from the calculations and several lower salaried players moved up, including Blount.

Entering the season, Blount was a long shot for a comp pick because he signed a contract that averaged just 1,250,000. The cutoff was Margus Hunt with an average salary of 2,050,000, and Alex Okafor (1,935,000) and Tom Compton (1,850,000) were ahead of him as well. However, the season ending injuries to Okafor and qualifying FA Nate Allen (6th) will drop them from the calculation. Remember last year's comp picks when Alex Mack had to play a certain amount of snaps for the Pats to get that pick for Jamie Collins? The same applies here. Right now, Blount is projected to net the Patriots Mr. Irrelevant, the 256th and last pick in the draft.

When factoring in all of the Patriots other picks and trades, here are the current picks the the Patriots possess in 2018. It's important to note that Eric Rowe's extended absence will ensure that he will not play 50% of the defensive snaps and the Patriots will send Philadelphia a 4th round pick, not a 3rd. In all, the Patriots traded their own 4th, 5th and 7th round picks for Rowe, Cassius Marsh, and Marquis Flowers.

2018 Patriots Draft Picks

1st round: #31 overall

2nd round: #34 overall (from San Francisco), #63 overall

3rd round: #95 overall

4th round: #137 overall (from Jabaal Sheard's departure)

6th round: #209 overall

7th round: #256 overall (from Blount’s departure)

For a Patriots team that has not picked in the 1st round since 2015, this is the first time in a while they have had draft picks that were this valuable. In fact, according to our own Rich Hill's updated draft value chart, the Patriots are projected to have 507.29 points of value. That's the most value since 2012 when they traded up in the first round to take Chandler Jones and Donta' Hightower, and traded up in the 2nd round to take a safety from Illinois that we wish to forget.

The Patriots will enter 2018 with question marks across the defensive line and in search for a new young backup quarterback to groom. Luckily, they'll have a lot of draft capital to work with.