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April 26, 2008
Belichick chats about Mayo
Bill Belichick -- looking surprisingly dapper in a gray suit with pink (!) tie -- just met with the media to chat about New England's first-round draft pick, Jerod Mayo.
"We're excited to have Jerod join our organization," Belichick said, "he's a versatile player, he did a lot at Tennessee. He's a smart kid, he runs well, we think he'll be a good addition to our football team."
Though Belichick spends most of his on-field practice time with the linebackers, New England has not selected a linebacker higher than the fifth round since Belichick and Scott Pioli took over the Patriots in 2000. And in true keep-you-on-your-toes fashion, just when it seemed like the organization would never take a 'backer that high, filling the position with free agents instead, they made Mayo the 10th overall pick.
And, it seems like, for good reason.
"He's one of the better linebackers we've seen in a while," Belichick said. "But we were picking higher than we have in a while."
Mayo shot onto New England's radar once the junior declared for early entry into the draft, he added.
During Mayo's visit to Gillette, Belichick said, team officials found him to be a "very intelligent, smart" player; with the Volunteers, Mayo was in charge of making calls in the huddle and on-field adjustments.
Posted by Shalise Manza Young at 4:55 PM | Permalink
I like the trade to get the extra third round pick but Mayo was not rated an early first rounder by most draft "experts". Mayo has had some knee trouble and has not played inside in a 3/4 defense.
If the Patriots felt they had to reach to get a guy who fits a big need it's understandable but they passed on some much higher rated guys to take Mayo.
I usually drink the cool aid and trust in Bill but last years draft produced only two guys who made the team and Richards may not stay long.
Posted by: larry at April 26, 2008 7:11 PM