By Cody Strahm @CodyJStrahm on May 4, 2014
The New England Patriots typically play their cards close to the chest. It's the way Bill Belichick and company run the franchise. With that said, rumors have still surfaced regarding the club's draft plans. Here are five examples.
Despite perhaps more pressing needs elsewhere, the Patriots are rumored to be high on Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier, who would likely need to be nabbed with New England's first-round pick. Shazier isn't the most physical prospect, but his speed is unmatched at the linebacker position in this class. He could potentially give the Patriots' linebacker corps the explosiveness it's been missing.
Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley are entering the final year of their respective contracts while LaGarrette Blount is now a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Needless to say, the Patriots may consider selecting a running back during the draft. Ohio State's Carlos Hyde could be a tempting option in the second round.
There is a strong chance Rob Gronkowski, who suffered a torn ACL and MCL in Week 14 last season, won't be ready for the start of 2014. Not to forget the void left by Aaron Hernandez's imprisonment for an alleged murder, either. The Patriots are expected to select a tight end in one of the first three rounds. Texas Tech's Jace Amaro, Washington's Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Notre Dame's Troy Niklas are all perceived possibilities.
The aforementioned Stevan Ridley, who only has one year remaining on his contract, has had a troubling history of ball-security lapses. His four lost fumbles in 2013 were undoubtedly deemed unacceptable by Bill Belichick. Ridley being traded has been floating around as a possibility for quite some time, and there are some who believe this week's draft will be the opportune time to finally deal him.
The Patriots drafted Ryan Mallet in the third round of the 2011 draft to potentially succeed Tom Brady. However, there is a strong chance Mallet will pursue signing with a new team next offseason. Thus, the Patriots are expected to seek a new future franchise quarterback as early as Thursday night's first round. Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater headlines the list of passers New England has shown interest in this offseason.
October 4, 2015 by Gil Alcaraz IV
This priest seems to have taken his New York Giants fandom a little too far. Read More
October 4, 2015 by Brad Berreman
The Minnesota Vikings are dealing with injuries at wide receiver, so Cordarrelle Patterson needs to make the most of a potential opportunity on Sunday. Read More
October 4, 2015 by Christopher Schwarz
Rashad Jennings could be demoted as starting running back for the New York Giants, but it's too premature to promote Williams when Jennings is the superior RB. Read More
October 4, 2015 by Michael Terrill
The Indianapolis Colts will be without quarterback Andrew Luck, which means they could be in for a rough outing against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 4. Read More
October 4, 2015 by Asha Doucet
After starting only 16 games in his tenure with the Seattle Seahawks, Malcolm Smith is flourishing as a full-time starter for the Oakland Raiders. Read More
October 3, 2015 by Ryan Ratty
The Oakland Raiders will host the Chicago Bears on Sunday in a game that may be must-win for both teams. Here are five players to watch. Read More
October 3, 2015 by Doug Green
The San Francisco 49ers are facing an offensive rebuild soon, and the best way to start would be to trade Vernon Davis while he still has value. Read More
October 3, 2015 by Casey Drottar
Dwayne Bowe will return to the field tomorrow after being a healthy scratch last week, and it's about time he starts earning the money Cleveland gave him this offseason. Read More