NESN's Doug Kyed released another mock draft this morning and has the Patriots picking DT Dominique Easley. Easley tore ACLs in both knees during his time at the University of Florida, but Kyed says the Patriots may still be interested.
"The Patriots' Super Bowl-winning teams were built by drafting defensive tackles in the first round," writes Kyed. "Easley is more Ty Warren than Vince Wilfork or Richard Seymour."
In the second round, Kyed has the Patriots picking former Notre Dame TE Troy Niklas. Niklas is considered more of a blocking tight end, but Kyed says he has tremendous upside.
With only a week remaining until the 2014 NFL Draft, local writers are taking a closer look at a few prospects they believe the Patriots may target. Today in the Boston Herald, Karen Guregian focuses on linebacker Ryan Shazier from Ohio State. Shazier recorded 134 tackles in 2013, including 22.5 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles. Guregian says the 6-foot-1 linebacker has a lot of speed (sub 4.4 40 at his Pro Day) and she believes that he would fit well alongside Jerod Mayo and Jamie Collins.
"He's a playmaker, so his skills and speed will get him on the field, most likely on passing downs. Belichick could do a lot with him in the sub defenses," says Guregian.
Over at Comcast Sports Net, Tom E. Curran is focusing on Austin Seferian-Jenkins from Washington. Curran believes the 6-foot-5 tight end could be a good compliment to Rob Gronkowski.
"A very smooth, tall pass-catcher who uses his body well and goes up to get the ball with abandon," says Curran. "Accelerates well and is able to get downfield for 20-plus targets with great regularity."
Concerns surrounding Seferian-Jenkins are that he has had some off-field issues (DUI last year) while some say he also lacks intensity and attention to detail.
Based on Seferian-Jenkins' off-field issues alone, Ben Volin would tell you he's not the right fit in New England - at least not this year. In a recent article in the Boston Globe, Volin said that the Patriots should take no character chances in this draft. He believes that next week's draft show whether the Patriots have learned their lesson from last summer's Aaron Hernandez investigation.
"Not that Kraft and Belichick are asking for my advice, but this seems like a good year to stay away from draft prospects with criminal histories and significant off-field issues," writes Volin. "It's just that the Patriots, with everything they've been through with Hernandez, can't afford to make another mistake on character."
One player who does fit into the "good character" category is former UCLA guard, Xavier Su'a-Filo. In fact, he's a practicing Mormon who went on a two-year mission trip in the middle of his college career. NFL.com's Andy Feneion says Su'a-Filo certainly seems to fit the mold of a Bill Belichick-style player and many have compared him with Logan Mankins.
"He's soft-spoken. But on the field, he'll tear your head off, maul you into submission. Like most Patriots, his priorities seem to be in order, too," says Feneion.
Yesterday, Tom Brady found himself atop yet another list. NFL.com's Jim Reineking ranked Brady as the best draft-day steal in NFL history above Hall of Famers like Roger Staubach, Joe Montana, Johnny Unitas, and Deacon Jones.
Darrelle Revis made a surprise appearance in a team-based charity basketball game last night at Westwood High School. According to Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston, Revis joined his teammates Kyle Arrington, Kenbrell Thompkins, Shane Vereen and Brandon Bolden in the game and then later signed autographs for fans in the crowd.