"I think he's been in a solid program". Due to trades that brought back Brandin Cooks and Kony Ealy, the Patriots' first pick wasn't scheduled until 72 overall, which was a pick acquired with Ealy.
Trading either Jimmy Garoppolo or Malcolm Butler would not only get the Patriots back into the early rounds of the draft, but also leave the team with a few unanswered roster questions depending on what reveals. As of now it's unlikely that the Pats are going to have a first round pick as the Malcolm Butler trade talks have died down. This move was a classic for Bill Belichick, knowing that his target player was going to be available at No. 83, that being defensive end/outside linebacker Derek Rivers. He is six-foot five-inches and weighs close to 250 pounds. "With that pick the Patriots selected a 6'4" OLB Derek Rivers out of Youngstown State.
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On Belichick, he said, "I love everything that he is and what he stands for and how he coaches, his demeanor".
Top left tackles can usually command big money on the free-agent market, so this pick potentially provides the Patriots a fallback option in 2018.
The Patriots are keeping Garoppolo for insurance in case the injury bug catches up on starting quarterback Tom Brady. There are, to be sure, other obvious factors such as: Have teams hit on certain positions in the past? "The 6'6", 302 pound tackle finished his career having played in 44 games over his collegiate career, including 13 in his final season in 2016. Coach [Bo] Pelini has been an National Football League coach, been a Division I head coach [at Nebraska]. "He's intelligent. So he has the characteristics that we're looking for". On the field, Rivers gives it his all, on every play, never taking a break. But maybe that's because New England has been so consistently good, for so long, that they simply don't have that much space for new starters. He slides well, but if he has a weakness, it's that he will sometimes get beat on an inside move.