It Is What It Is
NEED TO KNOW
Follow WEEI.com football writer Christopher Price at twitter.com/cpriceNFL. In addition, get the latest WEEI.com updates at twitter.com/WEEI.
A WEEI.com Patriots Blog
WEEI.com Blog Network

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: South Carolina WR Bruce Ellington

05.05.14 at 9:11 am ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

BRUCE ELLINGTON

Position: Wide receiver

School: South Carolina

Height: 5-foot-9

Weight: 197 pounds

Achievements: 2013, 2012, 2011 SEC Fall Academic Honor Roll, 2011 Freshman All-SEC honors

What he brings: Ellington is a bit of a mystery. In his three seasons with the Gamecocks, he showed his quick speed and agility, including reliable hands and playmaking ability. However, South Carolina’€™s offense didn’t require him to know the full route tree, and allowed the receiver to roam a little bit. Ellington often showed up as an unwilling blocker for his fellow receivers and running backs. Scouts are concerned about his lack of height.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 2-3

Notes: In 2013 Ellington recorded 49 catches for 775 yards and eight touchdowns. He finished his career at South Carolina with 106 catches for 1,586 yards and 16 touchdowns. … At the NFL combine the 22-year-old recorded a 4.45 40-yard dash, benched 225 pounds 15 times and ran the 3-cone drill in 6.69 seconds. … Ellington played basketball at South Carolina in 2010 before joining the football team in 2011 and playing both sports. … Ellington’s cousin, Andre Ellington, is a running back for the Cardinals who was drafted in the sixth round last year out of Clemson.

Related articles:

SB Nation: Bruce Ellington: Upside, upside, upside

SB Nation: Bruce Ellington in the NFL draft: What they’re saying

Video: Here are highlights of Ellington at South Carolina.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Bruce Ellington,

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Duke CB Ross Cockrell

05.04.14 at 5:33 pm ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

ROSS COCKRELL

Position: Cornerback

School: Duke

Height: 6-foot-0

Weight: 191 pounds

Achievements: 2013, 2012 first-team All-ACC (media, coaches), three-time Academic All-ACC, 2012 All-American honorable mention (Sports Illustrated), 2012 Willis Aldridge Award as Duke’€™s most outstanding defensive back, 2010 freshman third-team All-American (Phil Steele)

What he brings: According to scouts, Cockrell has solid awareness on the field and plays with discipline. They also say, though, that he has a small frame and some tightness in his hips.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 3-5

Notes: Cockrell graduated with a degree in political science in May 2013 but returned for the 2013 season while he pursued a graduate degree in the subject. He finished his career at Duke with the fourth-most passes defended, sixth-most passes broken up and 10th-most interceptions (tied). … During the 2012 season, Cockrell acted as a team captain and had a school-record 75-yard blocked field goal return for a touchdown. … Cockrell made his Duke debut in 2010 after redshirting during the 2009 season. Cockrell, who’€™s father played football at Columbia, started in all 12 games during that first season and finished the year with 60 tackles — the sixth most on the team. He also led Duke with three interceptions and was second on the team with seven passes broken up.

Related articles:

FOXSports.com: Former Duke CB Ross Cockrell eager for NFL scouting combine

The Herald-Sun: CB Ross Cockrell holds nothing back at Duke pro day

Video: Here is a video that highlights Cockrell’s career with Duke.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Ross Cockrell,

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Clemson CB Bashaud Breeland

05.04.14 at 9:06 am ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

BASHAUD BREELAND

Position: Cornerback

School: Clemson

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 197 pounds

Achievements: 2013 second-team All-ACC

What he brings: Breeland is a young, athletic corner who still needs to develop multiple parts of his game. While he looks the part, he only has sufficient speed. Analysts say his lack of top-end speed, failure to prevent receivers from getting behind him and overaggressive hands make him susceptible to big plays. The Clemson corner needs to improve his run tackling, too. Breeland is better in the shorter part of the field and doesn’t make too many mental errors in coverage. Breeland has all the tools to be a top cornerback in the league, he just has to put it all together.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 3-4

Notes: In 2013 Breeland recorded four interceptions, 17 pass breakups and 74 tackles. The 22-year-old finished his career with six interceptions, three sacks and 136 tackles. … At the NFL combine he ran a 4.59 40-yard dash, benched 225 pounds 11 times and ran the 3-cone drill in 7.04 seconds.

Related articles:

The Post and Courier: Clemson’s Bashaud Breeland battling to join elite group of NFL cornerback prospects

Orange and White: Bashaud Breeland heads back into training in preparation for NFL draft

Video: Here are Breeland’€™s highlights against Syracuse in 2013.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Bashaud Breeland,

Sunday NFL Notes: With draft weekend looming, one final chance to mock

05.04.14 at 6:00 am ET
By   |   Comments

In lieu of this week’€™s Sunday NFL Notebook — and with the draft finally looming on Thursday — here’€™s our fourth and final mock draft.

1. Texans: Jadeveon Clowney, DL, South Carolina — There’€™s a terrific chance that the Texans end up trading down — there’€™s more and more talk that they swing a deal with the Falcons at No. 6 — but if they stick at No. 1, Clowney is the smart choice. They should also be able to chase after a quarterback at the end of the first round (if they want to try to swing a trade), or with the first pick of the second round.

2. Rams: Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn St. Louis could also end up trading down, as Handsome Les Snead has hinted throughout the pre-draft process. But if the Rams stick at No. 2, Robinson should be the play.

3. Jaguars: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson — Watkins started as one of the best of a really good group of receivers, but has really emerged throughout the pre-draft process as a potentially special player.

4. Browns: Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M — Cleveland has finally acknowledged its interest in Manziel, and while he’€™s been up-and-down boards (and mocks) throughout the pre-draft process the marriage of the Browns and Johnny Football instantly make them one of the most compelling teams in the league.

5. Raiders: Khalil Mack, LB, Buffalo — Like Watkins, Mack has really emerged as a potential game-changer throughout the pre-draft process, going from being one of the best players at his position to someone who has catapulted into the top five.

6. Falcons: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M — It’€™s a good year to be in the market for a really good tackle, and Matthews is one of the best in this draft. (That being said, it wouldn’t surprise us in the least if Atlanta pushed all of its chips to the middle of the table and went after Clowney.)

7. Buccaneers: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M — Tampa could try to land one of the elite tackles, but the lure of Evans at No. 7 proves to be too great. Teaming him with Vincent Jackson gives a jolt to the Tampa passing game.

8. Vikings: Blake Bortles, QB, Central Florida — With the two potentially transformative defensive players off the board in Clowney and Mack, the belief is that Minnesota goes after a quarterback, and Bortles figures to be the best fit with Norv Turner‘s€™ offensive system. Bortles won’€™t have to be the starter from Day 1 — the Vikings figure to have a temporary placeholder in Matt Cassel — but Bortles will be the future.

9. Bills: Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina — Really, the choice here for the Bills comes down to the flashy offensive pickup or the sturdy tackle in someone like Taylor Lewan. Ebron is a dynamic offensive presence, one who could give Buffalo an interesting pair of tight ends (Ebron and Scott Chandler).

10. Lions: Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State The Lions need help in the secondary, and so they could go after a few different bodies at this point. But our pick is Gilbert, who has impressed throughout the pre-draft process.
Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: sunday nfl notes,

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Wisconsin ILB Chris Borland

05.03.14 at 6:36 pm ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

CHRIS BORLAND

Position: Inside linebacker

School: Wisconsin

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 245 pounds

Achievements: 2013 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, 2013 Big Ten Linebacker of the Year, 2013 first-team All-American, 2013, 2012, 2011 first team All-Big Ten, 2009 Big Ten Freshman of the Year

What he brings: Borland could be one of the most complete players in the draft with a great pedigree and few flaws. The 23-year-old consistently showed solid coverage skills, great tackling and diagnosis of plays and some big-play ability. Scouts are underwhelmed with his size, but Borland proved at Wisconsin that he can be successful. He has drawn comparisons to Dolphins linebacker Zach Thomas. There are concerns about Borland’€™s shoulder, which he injured in 2010, causing him to miss all but two games that year.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 2-3

Notes: In 2013 Borland recorded 111 tackles, four sacks, 8 1/2 tackles for a loss and one forced fumble. … At the NFL combine Borland ran a 4.83 40-yard dash, benched 225 pounds 27 times and performed the 3-cone drill in 7.18 seconds.

Related articles:

Merced Sun-Star: Borland measuring up as a ‘safe’ pick

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Bad shoulder knocks Badgers’ Borland off one NFL draft board

Video: Here are Borland’€™s highlights against South Carolina in the 2014 Capital One Bowl.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Chris Borland,

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Florida State FS Terrence Brooks

05.03.14 at 9:03 am ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

TERRENCE BROOKS

Position: Free safety

School: Florida State

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 196 pounds

Achievements: 2013 first-team All-American (CBS Sports), 2013 second-team All-ACC

What he brings: While not physically imposing, Brooks use his speed and agility to be a dangerous force in the defensive backfield. Despite his smaller stature, Brooks isn’t afraid to go for the big hit, although sometimes he gets overly aggressive and misses the tackle. Quick feet and long arms help make him a natural playmaker, as does his time spent at cornerback early in his collegiate career, but he struggles to make interceptions.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 2-3

Notes: During his senior season, his second as a starter, Brooks recorded 50 tackles, one interception and four pass breakups. … At the NFL combine, Brooks recorded a 4.41 40-yard dash, benched 225 pounds 10 times and ran a 7.35 in the 3-cone drill.

Related articles:

Playthedraft.com: FSU Pro Day: Terrence Brooks

Fox Sports: FSU’s Terrence Brooks out to prove doubters wrong in NFL

Video: Here are Brooks’ 2013 highlights with Florida State.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Terrence Brooks,

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Wisconsin WR Jared Abbrederis

05.02.14 at 5:26 pm ET
By   |   Comments

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’€™s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

JARED ABBREDERIS 

Position: Wide receiver

School: Wisconsin

Height: 6-foot-1

Weight: 195 pounds

Achievements: 2013, 2012 first-team All-Big Ten

What he brings: A smart, instinctual player who probably would be a better slot receiver, Abbrederis lacks ideal size and top-end speed to be a true No. 1 receiver in the NFL. His deceptive quickness and lateral speed make him dangerous in the middle of the field. Despite his physical limitations, the 23-year-old is smart and understands how to get open while also knowing various schemes and intricacies. Scouts like Abbrederis’€™s smooth hands.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 3-4

Notes: Abbrederis had 78 catches for 1,081 yards and seven touchdowns during his senior season at Wisconsin, where he began his career as a walk-on. He added six rushes for 119 yards and two touchdowns. … At the NFL combine Abbrederis ran a 4.50 40-yard dash, benched 225 pounds four times and completed the 3-cone drill in 6.90 seconds.

Related articles:

Bleacher Report: Hardworking Jared Abbrederis excited to have the opportunity to chase his dreams

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Journey of faith goes on for UW’s Abbrederis

Video: Here are Abbrederis’€™s highlights against Illinois in 2013.

Read More: 2014 NFL Draft, 2014 Potential Patriots, Jared Abbrederis,
Latest on Twitter
Patriots Box Score
Patriots Schedule
Player News
Mercedes Benz
Patriots Headlines
NFL Headlines
Tips & Feedback

Verify