New England Patriots - AFC East
Oregon S Patrick Chung
Oregon S Patrick Chung
Posted Apr 27, 2009

New England Patriots - AFC East, 2009 Draft Selections & Prospects

New England Patriots

- 2009 NFL Draft Breakdown and Analysis
1st Round
| 2nd Round | 3rd Round | 4th Round | 5th Round | 6th Rd | 7th Rd

CFN 2009 Draft Central & Team-by-Team Picks and Analysis


2 34 2nd Round (from Kansas City)  
Patrick Chung, SS Oregon 5-11, 212

He’s not going to be a highlight reel playmaker, but he’ll be a rock-solid, ultra-reliable rock in the secondary for a long, long time. Smart, tough, and instinctive, he’s able to read plays a half second before they happen and he’s always around the ball. While he’s built for stopping the run and being used as a strong safety, he has just enough range to play free safety. Known for being a good, sound football player, he showed he could be a workout warrior, too, by running a 4.49 and lifting 225 pounds a lineman-like 25 times at the Combine. There’s no down side outside of his lack of pizzazz.
CFN Value Rank:
Second Round    CFN Position Rank: 1
8 40 2nd Round (from Oakland) 
Ron Brace, DT Boston College  6-3, 330

Stick him in the middle of the line and let him stop the run. He’s not going to move anywhere and he’s not going to get into the backfield, but he’s really big, too big at times, really strong, and he could be a far less expensive version of his former teammate, B.J. Raji. It would be nice if he could be a bit more of a killer and it would be a plus if he could show some semblance of agility, but that’s not his game. He’ll sit on the inside of a defense as either a nose or a 4-3 tackle and will take on two blockers and make every play that comes to him.
CFN Value Rank:
Second Round    CFN Position Rank: 5
9 41 2nd Round (from Green Bay) 
Darius Butler, CB Connecticut  5-10, 178

A nice prospect going into the off-season, Butler ripped it up at the Combine and his stock shot through the roof. His 4.41 was a breath of fresh air among a slow corner class, and he came up with an NBA guard-like 43” vertical leap and 11’ 2” broad jump. He also stood out in practices at the Senior Bowl. He’s like a gnat when he tries to tackle, he can be brushed aside, and he’s not going to provide much help against the power runners, but that won’t be his job. He’ll handle the smaller, quicker receivers, but he has to get stronger to be able to deal with the bigger more physical ones. He’d get killed by a Calvin Johnson or a Larry Fitzgerald, but he could lock on to a Steve Smith.
CFN Value Rank: Second Round
    CFN Position Rank: 2
26 58 2nd Round 
Sebastian Vollmer, OT Houston 6-7, 315

An extremely interesting prospect with size, attitude, and room to grow. He’s just scratching the surface on what he can do, but who wants to invest the time and effort? He needs to get a lot stronger and he needs to improve his quickness, but he’s never going to be a top athlete and he can’t play left tackle.
CFN Value Rank:
Sixth Round    CFN Position Rank: 20
19 83 3rd Round (from NY Jets through Green Bay)
Brandon Tate, WR North Carolina  6-1, 185
If given time he could be great. One of the all-time great kickoff returners in college football history, he was on his way to a special year as a receiver as well as a return man before suffering a horrendous knee injury that could still keep him at far less than 100% well into the 2009 NFL season. Before the injury he was tremendously quick, hard to get a hold of, and productive. In time, he'll be a top-shelf special teamer and a very, very good inside receiver once he's healthy again. He might have been a late first rounder if he didn't have the knee problem.
CFN Value Rank: Third Round
   CFN Position Rank: 10
33 97 3rd Round
Tyrone McKenzie, LB South Florida  6-2, 245
A big-time producer who fought through a series of issues off the field to become a leader and the type of player you want in a locker room. Strong, he plays bigger than his size and isn't afraid to mix it up and stick his nose in to make a big play. He'll fight through the nicks and bumps and will have to be really, really hurt to not get in the lineup, but he's limited by average athletic ability and a lack of size. Even so, he'll work to make a roster and could be a star on special teams before he gets his chance to shine as an outside linebacker.
CFN Value Rank: Fourth Round
   CFN Position Rank: 9
23 123 4th Round (from Baltimore)
Rich Ohrnberger, OG/C Penn State 6-2, 300
A versatile blocker who'll likely be tried out at guard but could see a little work at center in a punch. He's athletic for his size and has a decent mean streak. Short, he'll be all about leverage and isn't going to be productive if he has to extend his arms. He's limited by his physical skills and will struggle to find a role.

CFN Value Rank: Free Agent
   CFN Position Rank: 28 (at guard)
34 170 5th Round
George Bussey, OT Louisville 6-3, 300
Bussey worked himself into an all-star with decent smarts and quickness. However, he lacks big-time bulk and needs a ton of work to become an NFL caliber blocker. Best suited for a finesse offense, he's never going to pound over anyone and will either make it as a backup right tackle or he'll be cut immediately.
CFN Value Rank: Free Agent
   CFN Position Rank: 23
34 207 6th Round
Myron Pryor, DT Kentucky  6-0, 310
Height will always be an issue, he's pushing six feet tall and is a bit of a bowling ball, but the biggest issue is his injury history. Unable to stay fully healthy, he'll always be bothered by a variety of bumps and bruises and he'll have a hard time being consistent. On the plus side, he's freakishly strong, setting Kentucky high school weight room records, and he's quick enough to get into the backfield on a semi-regular basis. He doesn't play up to his strength and will be erased at times if he's asked to be on the nose.
CFN Value Rank: Seventh Round
   CFN Position Rank: 22
25 198 6th Round (from Baltimore)
Jake Ingram, C/LS Hawaii 6-3, 232
Purely a long snapper, but a fantastic one, he doesn't miss. He walked on to Hawaii and earned a scholarship and is a machine who fires fastball after fastball without waver. He can't do anything else, but as a specialist he'll be in the league for ten years.

CFN Value Rank: Free Agent
   CFN Position Rank: NR
23 232 7th Round (from Miami through Jacksonville)
Julian Edelman, QB Kent State 6-0, 198
A pure Wildcat/spread formation option, Edelman has the speed and quickness to potentially be tried out as a slot receiver, but he'll be a specialist under center. He's not Pat White, he doesn't have the passing arm or the accuracy, but he's tremendously quick, is great on the option, and could give defenses fits for a few plays a game in a special package.

CFN Value Rank: Free Agent
   CFN Position Rank: NR
25 234 7th Round
Darryl Richard, DT Georgia Tech   6-3, 305
Extremely smart, extremely motivated, and extremely big, he has the character and the make-up of an anchor. And then there's the Combine. He only came up with 17 lifts on the bench, wasn't athletic enough to give any inkling that he could ever get into the backfield, and he'll only make plays that are funneled to him The type of player every coach would love to have, he'll be tough to cut because of his effort, and easy to cut because of his lack of raw skills.
CFN Value Rank:
Seventh Round    CFN Position Rank: 16


The Draft Was ... A need filler. The Patriots tend to do things differently when it comes to the draft, and it's hard to argue with the overall results, but every pick was a bit of a reach and they're putting all their linebacking eggs in Jerod Mayo's basket. Terrence Wheatley could be a bit of a steal in the second around and Shawn Crable fits the team's defense to a T.
Best Value Pick: Shawn Crable. 3rd Round. Considering what a weak linebacking class this is, to get a versatile defender like Crable, even if it was a few picks early, was a big get. This was the pick the Patriots had to have to boost the outside.
Biggest Reach: Matt Slater, WR UCLA. 5th Round. Is a fifth round pick worth a flier on a pure special teamer? He's not a receiver and he's not a defensive back anymore, so if he's not an elite gunner in coverage, and a good return man, this was a waste of a decent draft slot.
They Should've ... Done something to help the O line. New England doesn't really believe in investing too heavily in offensive linemen and has been great at developing players for their needs, but a bit of a boost to the depth should've been addressed in the mid-rounds.


10 10 1st Round (from New Orleans)   Jerod Mayo, OLB/ILB Tennessee
One of the high risers among scouting circles, everyone came late to the party; this guy was one of the SEC's best players for a few years even with his knee problems. While he looks more like a pumped up safety and a thick, blow-'em-up linebacker, he's a great tackler who can play inside and out in any system. He makes a lot of mistakes, but they're usually errors coming from trying too hard. He needs to be on the outside to be a star, and both will happen.
CFN Value Rank: Second Round  
   CFN Position Rank: 3
31 62 2nd Round   Terrence Wheatley, CB Colorado
While he's not all that big at just 5-9 and 187 pounds, he hits like a much bigger player and has elite speed. Because of his size he'll have injury problems, and missed all of 2005 with a wrist injury, but he's not going to stop hitting and he should play a role in some was as a nickelback or as a No. 2 cover-corner. As long as he knows what his role is and doesn't try to be something he's not, he should last in the league a long time.
CFN Value Rank: Fourth Round   CFN Position Rank:
15 78 3rd Round (from New Orleans)  Shawn Crable, DE/LB Michigan
An ultra-productive linebacker last year with 90 tackles and 7.5 sacks, he's a hybrid outside linebacker/defensive end as a pro. Undersized for a lineman at around 6-5 and 245 pounds, he makes up for it with tremendous athleticism and good strength for his size. His money will be made in the weight-room. With room on his frame for another 15 pounds of muscle, he could bulk up and grow into a pass rushing end and could become a poor man's Terrell Suggs.
CFN Value Rank: Fourth Round   CFN Position Rank: 9 (as a DE)
31 94 3rd Round   Kevin O'Connell, QB San Diego State
Here's your deep sleeper with serious upside. Certain to be there for the taking on the second day he could be the best bargain in the draft. He has the best combination of size, mobility and skills of all the prospects and if he's allowed a little time to develop, and he's allowed to work through his mistakes, and if he gets a good coach who can shorten up his delivery to create a tight throwing motion he has the pieces to be a starter. The problem will be patience. If he's thrown to the wolves right away, forget about it. It might be a stretch, but with the right situation he could be a bigger, more mobile Tony Romo.
CFN Value Rank: Fifth Round    CFN Position Rank: 7
30 129 4th Round    Jonathan Wilhite, CB Auburn
Injuries kept him from having the career he was supposed to. He struggled with knee and shoulder problems and didn't do enough when he was healthy. Even though he didn't do enough at Auburn and even though he's a bit small, he showed great speed in off-season workouts. On speed alone he's worth a look, but he's a project.
CFN Value Rank: Seventh Round   CFN Position Rank:
18 153 5th Round (from trade) Matt Slater, S/WR UCLA  
Purely a special teamer, but a special one. While he was a receiver and defensive back in name, his career quickly changed after suffering a broken leg and he became a tremendous playmaker in kick coverage. A luxury pick; there's no reason to draft him and it's asking a lot to make room on a roster for him.
CFN Value Rank: Free Agent      CFN Position Rank: NR
31 197 6th Round   Bo Ruud, LB Nebraska
Don't fall for the family name; he's not Barrett. Bo isn't nearly as good as his brother, but he's a tweener
with the ability to see time inside and out. He doesn't have the overall strength to hold off NFL blockers in the running game and he doesn't have the ability to get into the backfield on a regular basis.
CFN Value Rank: Free Agent  
CFN Position Rank: NR