New England Patriots Draft Rumors: Recapping All the Latest Buzz

Mike DussaultSenior Analyst IApril 22, 2013

New England Patriots Draft Rumors: Recapping All the Latest Buzz

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    The NFL draft starts Thursday, April 25, and while the New England Patriots are about to welcome at least a few new rookies, there could also be some movement on the trade front as well.

    It's the most exciting three days of the offseason!

    While it's impossible to know all the discussions that are going on behind the scenes, there have been rumblings in recent weeks about some potential moves the Pats might be considering.

    Here's the latest on the rumors we've been tracking.

Jeff Demps to Be Traded?

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    Jeff Demps' agent said the Patriots were considering trading the speedy running back and return specialist, and it shouldn't be all that surprising (via Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald). Demps told the Pats he planned to continue pursuing a track career, according to ESPN.

    Doesn't take a Pats insider to tell you how that must've been received in Foxboro.

    With just five draft picks and solid depth at the running back and returner spots, trading Demps could likely net as high as a fourth- or fifth-round pick. The Pats currently don't have a selection in between the third and seventh round, so that could be useful.

    Demps could have a new team by the weekend if the Patriots can find a trade partner willing to let him run track too.

Browns Interested in Ryan Mallett?

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    There have been rumors of the Cleveland Browns' interest in Ryan Mallett all offseason, but it was apparent that if something was going to happen, it would be closer to the draft.

    So this Mallett-to-Browns story won't go away. Asked Lombardi abt it straight up yest. He laughed. If it happens, don't think till April

    — Aditi Kinkhabwala (@AKinkhabwala) March 13, 2013

    Mike Lombardi's interest in Mallett is well-documented, and if the Browns are able to trade out of the sixth overall pick, they'd likely have the draft capital to make a move on Mallett. A third-round pick seems to make sense, though the Pats are likely pushing for a second-rounder.

    It's a hard read on Mallett from what he's shown the last two preseasons and limited mop-up duty. He has a huge arm, but he has shown little consistency, often launching missiles headed for the bleachers.

    Could Lombardi covet that arm enough to make him take a chance? 

    The Chiefs paid a second-rounder for Matt Cassel, and everyone saw how that worked out. And Cassel was coming off an 11-win season.

    A second for Mallett would be a lot.

John Abraham Still a Possibility

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    The Patriots first hosted John Abraham back in March at the start of free agency. But more than a month later, Abraham remains on the market.

    Greg A. Bedard of the Boston Globe thinks that a deal between the Pats and Abraham could still get done.

    Though the Pats met with Dwight Freeney as well, Abraham is the better fit in New England, and it still has a need for a designated pass-rusher.

    Trevor Scott could always return, but look for the Pats to keep the door open on Abraham all the way into training camp.

Wide Receiver or Cornerback in Round 1?

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    After a long draft season, it seems as though the consensus positions Pats fans want addressed are (in order of popularity):

    1. Wide receiver
    2. Cornerback
    3. Defensive end

    There's no question the Pats could use a young weapon for the outside of their offense, but their draft misses have been well-chronicled. 

    But there's also no question the Pats pass defense has been porous for three seasons now, so there's certainly an argument to be made for upgrading the secondary or pass rush.

    It would appear that the offensive line and offensive backfield probably will not be targeted, at least in the first or second round.

    There are viable options at all three positions of major need, but few would be surprised to see the Patriots trade out of first round completely.

Tim Tebow to the Patriots?

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    The Jets just unloaded Darrelle Revis; now all that's left is for them to get rid of Tim Tebow

    Could the Patriots be interested in Tim Tebow? Anthony Riccobono of the International Business Times listed the Patriots as one of three teams who could possibly bring in the embattled signal-caller.

    After all, Josh McDaniels did trade up to get him. He must've had some idea for how he was going to use him. And of course, there was the famous Bill Belichick, Nick Caserio and Tim Tebow dinner at Tresca, a popular North End Italian eatery.

    If Tebow was coming to the Patriots, it would not be as a quarterback. If anything, he'd be their backup tight end or fullback. And that's not to say it's a bad thing. If used correctly, he could be an interesting weapon, but it's pointless to have him back up Tom Brady as anything more than an emergency third option.

    The Patriots did a similar move with Danny Woodhead, who struggled to find a position as a Jet. He was extremely productive in the Pats system when used right.

    Could they do something similar this weekend? Tebow should be available if they want him.