NFL New England Patriots

2014 New England Patriots NFL Mock Draft: Post-Free Agency Edition

New England Patriots' 2014 NFL Mock Draft

New England Patriots
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With the initial round of free agency in the books, we are starting to get a better idea of position needs for each NFL team. Reaching the AFC Championship game, the New England Patriots had a great 2013 season. However, they still have plenty of work to do and holes to fill. The Patriots are always an interesting team to watch on draft day, because they are not afraid to go against the grain. Check out this 7-round mock draft for New England.

1st Round (29th Overall): Louis Nix III, DT, Notre Dame

Louis Nix NFL Draft
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1st Round (29th Overall): Louis Nix III, DT, Notre Dame

Louis Nix NFL Draft
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Mostly due to injuries, the Patriots were very thin at the defensive tackle position last season. On top of that, Vince Wilfork reportedly wants to be released. Louis Nix III would not only be an ideal replacement for Wilfork, he could fit in nicely beside him if he comes back to New England. Nix is a big man (6-foot-2, 331-pounds) with surprising speed and athleticism that would be a welcomed addition to the Patriots' defensive front.

2nd Round (62nd Overall): David Yankey, OL, Stanford

David Yankey NFL Draft
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

2nd Round (62nd Overall): David Yankey, OL, Stanford

David Yankey NFL Draft
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Playing all over the offensive line at Stanford, David Yankey possesses the versatility that Bill Belichick loves in a player. New England has a big need on the interior of the offensive line, and Yankey could step in and play admirably right away.

3rd Round (93rd Overall): Brandon Coleman, WR, Rutgers

Brandon Coleman NFL Draft
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3rd Round (93rd Overall): Brandon Coleman, WR, Rutgers

Brandon Coleman NFL Draft
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It is no secret that the Patriots have not given Tom Brady adequate receivers the past couple of seasons. Brandon Coleman is potentially the best value player in a deep WR draft class. Standing 6-foot-6 and weighing 225 pounds, Coleman has ideal size and strength for the position. He is far from a burner, but he has underrated speed and catches everything thrown his way.

And of course, Belichick loves guys from Rutgers.

4th Round (126th Overall): Max Bullough, LB, Michigan State

Max Bullough NFL Draft
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4th Round (126th Overall): Max Bullough, LB, Michigan State

Max Bullough NFL Draft
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Once a deep position on the roster, the Patriots are starting to get alarmingly thin at inside linebacker. Max Bullough would be an ideal target for them in the middle rounds. He has great run stuffing skills and solid athleticism. His pass coverage skills needs some work, but Bullough is a good player with impressive leadership abilities.

6th Round (182nd Overall): Vinnie Sunseri, S, Alabama

Vinnie Sunseri NFL Draft
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6th Round (182nd Overall): Vinnie Sunseri, S, Alabama

Vinnie Sunseri NFL Draft
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

After surprisingly leaving Alabama early to enter the draft, Vinnie Sunseri is one of the most interesting prospects at the safety position. Sunseri is coming off of a torn ACL injury, but his progression has seemingly been great. Sunseri is a very smart and athletic player that will slide down draft boards because of his injury. He would represent big time value in the 6th round.

6th Round (190th Overall): Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon

Colt Lyerla NFL Draft
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6th Round (190th Overall): Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon

Colt Lyerla NFL Draft
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If off-the-field issues were not a concern, Colt Lyerla could be a first-round pick. Unfortunately, after serious arrests and being kicked off the team at Oregon, those issues are a concern. Lyerla is a very athletic player who could very easily have a nice career as a "move" tight end in the NFL. Nobody uses the TE better than New England. It is a very risky pick, but I think the upside of Lyerla in this offense is worth the risk.

7th Round (221st Overall): Beau Allen, DT, Wisconsin

Beau Allen NFL Draft
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7th Round (221st Overall): Beau Allen, DT, Wisconsin

Beau Allen
Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Beau Allen is a nice player who showed versatility and the willingness to do the dirty work in college at Wisconsin. He seems like a great fit on the New England defensive line, as he could add depth at a lot of positions. Allen is good against the run and shows nice athleticism for a man his size (6-foot-3, 233-pounds).