Is it my imagination, or is it just possible that everyone is really OK with the Patriots trading out of the first round last night? I expected to wake up today to the typical shitstorm of criticism. The bellyaching about how they’re afraid to go after “talent.” The snarky bitching about their obsession with lower round “value picks.” Ripping Belichick is the National Pastime on the day after Round 1. But I’ve been looking all morning and I can’t find much of anything. Certainly nothing from anyone who counts. And I have to admit, I’m a little stunned by it.
Maybe it’s just because the usual anti-Patriot jihadists realize they have no choice but to acknowledge that this was an absolutely insane deal. Everyone who’s been paying attention to the draft will tell you there is not a lot of value at the top. This year’s crop is more deep and wide on midround talent. So to trade the 29th and get 52, 83, 102 and a 7th is such a swindle Belichick should’ve been wearing a mask. And to do it in a first round when Oakland, Buffalo and Dallas moved down for next to nothing in return? It was like turning iron into gold. Traditionally the Patriots sweet spot has been that 20th-through-50th range (in 11 years they’ve made 17 picks there). But this year the depth is later, so they loaded up. So they can play the cards they’ve drawn if they want, but if they target a guy they have the ammo to move up and get him. All because they passed on Cordarelle Patterson, a receiver so questionable Tennessee had to assign a coach just to make sure the call was signaled into him on any given play. Brilliant. That’s not playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers; It’s playing the multi-level 3-D chess Mr. Spock had. As Schopenhaur said “Talent hits the target no one else can hit; Genius hits the target no one else can see.”
The silence from the Pats-hating world has been deafening. Either they understand this was a great trade that had to be made, or their finally acknowledging what we’ve known all along: No one can work a draft board like Belichick does. @JerryThornton1
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