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Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Mock thoughts: Projecting trade at 28

By Mike Reiss

Nolan Nawrocki of Pro Football Weekly, who traditionally has one of the highest percentage of hits for teams in his mock drafts, produces version 2.0. It has an interesting twist for the Patriots.

At No. 28, Nawrocki envisions quarterback Jake Locker being selected. The Patriots currently own that pick.

Writes Nawrocki: "No, Tom Brady is not going anywhere, and Bill Belichick is not going to tap into his bag of tricks and line up Locker in the wing-T. If Locker is still on the board at this spot, as he very well could be, expect the Patriots to be manning the phones hard, seeking to find an interested suitor willing to give up a series of picks that could benefit the Patriots in years to come. The only shock here is if the Patriots were to sit still and hold both of their first-round picks."

At No. 17, Nawrocki has the Patriots selecting Cal defensive lineman Cameron Jordan.

ANALYSIS: In 2007, the Patriots had the No. 28 pick and traded it to the San Francisco 49ers. They received a 2007 fourth-round pick and a 2008 first-round draft pick, which turned out to be a Top-10 selection (LB Jerod Mayo). Perhaps for a quarterback, they could receive more this year. It gives them more trade flexibility that they also have the first pick of the second round, No. 33. As for Jordan, he has been tied to the Patriots by many analysts. His athleticism has been notable in pre-draft workouts (he measured 6-4, 287 and ran a 4.71 in the 40) and looks like a prospect who could project to a variety of roles.