Curran: Examining the Pats' draft analysis

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Curran: Examining the Pats' draft analysis

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com

Our corporate brother-in-arms, Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area, has put together an exhaustive investigation of the past five drafts for every team in the NFL and rated them top-to-bottom. The local entrant placed ninth in Maiocco's rankings, directly behind the Steelers and directly ahead of Tampa Bay. The Green Bay Packers finished first in the rankings. A couple of interesting things to note: no team has made more selections since 2006 that New England (51). Next highest are the Packers (47), who placed first in Maiocco's rankings. The Jets - rated fourth - only made 27 picks.They emerged with nine starters. The Patriots have drafted seven starters with their 51. Maiocco alsocomes up with a best pick and a worst pick for each team. Have to quibble with hisselection of Brandon Meriweather in 2007(21st overall) as the team's best. Jerod Mayo (10th in 2008), Devin McCourty (27th in '10), Sebastian Vollmer (58 in '09) and Stephen Gostkowski (118th in '06) are all better selections than Meriweather, a guy whogets voted into because of the "U" contingent around the league more than for on-field performance. As for the worst pick, Maiocco selects Laurence Maroney. I disagree there, as well. Maroney actually did some decent stuff here. Chad Jackson (36th in 2007), and the 2008 washout trio of Terrence Wheatley (62), Shawn Crable (78)and Kevin O'Connell(94)has to be appreciated.

Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Patriots players got a refresher on NFL social media policy because of Brown

Patriots players got a refresher on NFL social media policy because of Brown

FOXBORO -- Antonio Brown's live stream of coach Mike Tomlin's postgame speech on Sunday had a ripple effect that traveled all the way to New England: Just in case Patriots players weren't familiar with the league's social-media policy, they were reminded of it this week. 

"We were reminded of that," receiver Chris Hogan said. "I’m not sure what the timing is, but obviously, I don’t think we’ll see guys doing that in the locker room."

Players are prohibited from using social media in the locker room until media outlets have been given an opportunity to talk to players following games. Brown's Facebook Live video, which garnered national attention almost as soon as it went online, was shot well before the visitor's locker room at Arrowhead Stadium opened following Pittsburgh's win over Kansas City.

"We have a team policy on that," special teams captain Matthew Slater said. "Strictly enforced. We go from there."

Of course part of the reason the video became as widely disseminated as it did was because it caught Tomlin calling the Patriots "a--holes."

"I have a lot of respect for Coach Tomlin," Slater said when asked about Tomlin's speech. "I appreciate the way he prepares his team. I’ve had a good working relationship with him over the years, and it will continue to be that way."

Both Slater and Hogan insisted that their focus will be trained solely on preparing for what Tomlin and his players will do when they arrive to Gillette Stadium Sunday night -- not what they say leading up to kickoff.

"You come in here, you're automatically bought into what we preach here, what coach [Bill] Belichick preaches," Hogan said. "It's football. We're 100 percent football here. It's not about anything outside. Between the media or whatever it is outside of football, whatever we're doing. When we come here, it's 100 percent football. That's all we're focused on is the opponent we're playing that week."

Whether Goodell visits Foxboro or not, Patriots players say they don't care

Whether Goodell visits Foxboro or not, Patriots players say they don't care

FOXBORO -- Roger Goodell will reportedly be in Atlanta for the NFC Championship Game this weekend and therefore will miss the AFC title game between the Patriots and Steelers at Gillette Stadium on Sunday. His absence will mean he hasn't been to a Patriots game in more than two years, when he was present for the AFC title game in 2015 -- the birth of Deflategate. 

It's news that broke on Tuesday and sent some Patriots fans into an uproar. Patriots players, though, sound like they're having a hard time caring one way or the other.

"He’s the commissioner, so obviously whatever he wants to do, he can do," Tom Brady told WEEI's Kirk and Callahan Monday. "If he wants to come, that would be -- yeah, he can come."

In the Patriots locker room on Tuesday, others struck a similar tone.

"I could not care less," said Patriots receiver Chris Hogan. "I'm focused on Pittsburgh and their defense and studying them as much as I can this week, watching them as much as I can so that I can go out there on Sunday and be prepared."

Special teams captain Matthew Slater was similarly disinterested in the discussion.

"The game's going to be played," he said. "Whoever's in attendance is in attendance. We'll just worry about trying to play well."