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Can Bill Belichick make connection?

Patriots have need at receiver, but recent draft history at position is spotty

Updated: April 25, 2013, 2:58 AM ET
By Mike Reiss | ESPNBoston.com

Unlike last year, when New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick shocked many by trading up twice in the first round -- first to grab defensive end Chandler Jones and then for linebacker Dont'a Hightower -- such a move appears highly unlikely for the club when the 2013 NFL draft kicks off Thursday night (ESPN, 8 ET).

The stronger likelihood, barring an unexpected development in which one of the top-rated players slides to pick No. 29, is a trade down to accumulate more selections.

It ...

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