As with many teams in the bottom half of this years’ NFL Draft, it’s hard to tell from the get go, who the New England Patriots are going to choose with their first round pick. Firstly, it’s necessary to decide what position they need to fill the most.
Luckily for a team like the Patriots, they don’t have as many holes that they need to fill. The two most obvious ones, the two spots that they will almost definitely choose in their first and second round picks this year will be a defensive end to strengthen the front seven of their defense, and some new blood in their wide receiver corps, as they allowed their top receiver Wes Welker walk during this offseason.
Fortunately for the Patriots, they have Tom Brady, one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game and because of that, he can make just about anyone look good. Adding to this, they brought in former St. Louis Rams slot receiver Danny Amendola to fill the void that Welker vacated, so although it’s still a necessity for them to draft a receiver high in the draft, it became less of a necessity than to strengthen a defense that were ranked 25th last season in total yards allowed, 29th in passing yards allowed and 23rd in passing touchdowns allowed. For a team that is within arms length of the Lombardi Trophy, it becomes clear that this is top of the list.
The next decision to be made was which defensive end should be taken at the 29th spot. The Patriots 3-4 defense meant that the top two candidates remaining at the defensive end spot were Damontre Moore from Texas A&M and the European born Margus Hunt from SMU. It was hard to turn down someone as strong as Hunt but with the numbers that Moore has put up in his college career and his ability to pass rush either side of the line, it was difficult to say no.
His 24.5 sacks and 45 tackles for a loss (TFL) were some of the top numbers seen in recent times by the Texas Aggies, and his height (6’4.5″) his weight (250lb) and his extremely long arm length (34.75″) make him an extremely dynamic pass-rusher and ideal for the NFL.
What he lacks in explosiveness, he makes up for in excellent awareness and motor and makes him the perfect addition the Patriots defense.
Follow Simon Greene on Twitter @simongreene88