Sunday, April 29, 2012
What they're saying about Pats
By Mike Reiss
Links around the Web that include commentary on the Patriots' draft picks:
1. One viewpoint -- reaches in 2nd and 3rd round. Dan Pompei's "Sunday Blitz" on the National Football Post website includes comments from anonymous folks from NFL teams. Writes Pompei, "No one is comfortable questioning Bill Belichick’s judgment, but a couple front office men wondered about the Patriots’ second and third round picks. One personnel man said his team had safety Tavon Wilson, the Pats’ second round pick, ranked as a seventh round pick, and defensive end Jake Bequette, the Patriots’ third rounder, ranked as a free agent. 'That was crazy,' he said. It should be noted that the consensus is the Patriots picked very well in round one with the additions of linebacker Dont’a Hightower and defensive end Chandler Jones."
2. Wilson pick gets panned. Writing on SI.com, Tony Pauline picks his "steals" and "reaches" and Patriots second-round pick Tavon Wilson finds himself in the latter category. "Few teams, if any, considered Wilson draftable, never mind assigning him a second-round grade. Wilson is a nice prospect, yet does not stand out in any single area," Pauline writes.
3. Grade is a B-minus. Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com gives grades to each team, while breaking things down in categories of "best pick" (Chandler Jones), "questionable move" (Tavon Wilson) and "third-day gem" (Alfonzo Dennard). He gives them a B-minus.
4. Wait ... make that an "A." John Czarnecki of Foxsports.com grades each team and he puts the Patriots at the head of the class. "Both [first-rounders] should be interesting chess pieces in the New England scheme, especially with Jerod Mayo in the middle. Hightower figures to line up all over the field. ... Illinois safety Tavon Wilson has solid speed and fills other needs, too. ... Arkansas defensive end Jake Bequette is a try-hard rusher with a big motor. Bequette can be effective in certain situationals and impressively worked as a stand-up rusher at the Senior Bowl," he writes.
5. Wilson a "gamble to remember." Clark Judge of CBSSports.com files his "Judge"ments column and in the category of "gambles to remember," Patriots second-round draft choice Tavon Wilson is listed first.
6. Patriots rank 4th out of 32. Nate Davis of USA Today ranks all 32 NFL draft classes and puts the Patriots fourth. "Laudable win-now moves for a team seemingly on the cusp of a fourth Super Bowl title," he writes.
7. AFC powerhouse Patriots get richer. NFL.com's Simon Samano interviews NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock, who calls Patriots first-round picks Chandler Jones and Dont'a Hightower two of his "favorite players in the entire draft."
8. Patriots "nail" 2012 draft. NFL.com/NFL Network analyst Bucky Brooks places the Patriots in his "nailed it" category for their draft, calling Jones and Hightower "impact players," while adding that seventh-round pick Alfonzo Dennard could be a "hidden gem" if he "regains his focus on and off the field," Brooks writes.