2012 NFL Draft: Will the New England Patriots Trade Up into the Top 10?

Tony SantorsaSenior Writer IIApril 26, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 05:  Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on against the New York Giants during Super Bowl XLVI at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 5, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Early Thursday afternoon, ESPN Insider Adam Schefter tweeted that the New England Patriots would be willing to trade up. Shefter then went onto speculate that the team might be interested in trading up into the top 10, with teams such as the Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Miami Dolphins being teams that could be trading partners. 

If New England were to want to trade up, they certainly have the pieces to do so as they currently hold picks No. 27, No. 31, No. 48, No. 62, No. 93 and No. 126. Only one could assume that they would use one of their first rounders as well as either No. 48 or No. 62 to trade up with acquire a top 10 selection.

Now if New England were to trade up, who would they target?

Some players that come to mind are defensive lineman Michael Brockers, outside linebackers Melvin Ingram, Quinton Coples and Courtney Upshaw or cornerbacks Dre Kirkpatrick and Stephon Gilmore.

With this year's draft having so many talented and first-year impact players in the top 15 and then from the second half of the first round until the end of the second round being pretty evenly laced with talent, I wouldn't be surprised if the Patriots were to pull the trigger and move up.

However, I highly doubt that Bill Belichick and the Patriots will trade up inside of the top 10—I envision a scenario with the Patriots dropping out of the first round entirely, which means trading away their two first-rounders. What would they get in return? Possibly a second or a third rounder this year and likely a first-round pick in 2013. 

It is so difficult to predict what Belichick and the Patriots will do—but if you ask me, I'm predicting that they will trade out of the first round entirely. 


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