|NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Alabama CB Dre Kirkpatrick||03.28.12 at 8:19 am ET|
WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2012 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.
Weight: 192 pounds
Achievements: First-team All-America (FWAA 2011, CBSsports.com 2011, PFW 2011), second-team AP All-America (2011), second-team All-SEC (2011), finalist for Thorpe Award
What he brings: Kirkpatrick played as a reserve defensive back in 12 games during his freshman year, then blossomed over his next two seasons into one of the best cornerbacks available for the 2012 draft. Kirkpatrick is a physical player who does well in man coverage. He has good size and speed and has been credited with a high football IQ, which is something Bill Belichick likes to see from his players. He reads the receiver well and can change directions and recover quickly. He also recognizes what the quarterback wants to do and can bait quarterbacks into inaccurate passes.
Where the Patriots could get him: No. 27 or trade up
Notes: Kirkpatrick won the team’s Bart Starr Most Improved Player Award in the spring of 2011. His draft stock dropped briefly after he was arrested in January for possession of marijuana, but the charges were later dropped. Kirkpatrick’s statistics are not that impressive. He recorded 86 tackles and three interceptions in his collegiate career, but scouts say those numbers are low because teams stayed away from his side of the field.
Video: Here’s a highlight package of Kirkpatrick.
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