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NFL Rumors: Are Patriots Trying to Move Down in Draft?

The Patriots could be trying to move down the draft board in order to acquire a second round pick, which they currently do not have in 2020.

There is much speculation in regards to who the New England Patriots will select with the 23rd overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. But there's also one other thing that New England could do with their first round pick that seems a bit more realistic given Bill Belichick's draft history: trade down. 

For the Patriots, trading down to acquire draft picks makes a lot of sense. They may feel they can get a player in the second round that is similarly talented to someone they could have drafted in the first round, and on top of that they can obtain one or multiple draft picks by giving up their 23rd overall pick. As they begin the post-Tom Brady era, Belichick is seemingly trying to make his team much younger, so adding more draft picks on top of the 12 that he already has this year could be very beneficial to his goals for the 2020 season (not to mention he'll have more picks to help his team move up or down the draft board). 

On top of how much sense it would make for New England to trade back or completely out of the first round next week in the draft, Jim Nagy - Director of the Senior Bowl and a former Patriots scout who still has ties to the organization - said on Friday that he's hearing that "many" NFL teams in the mid-to-late part of the first round are trying to trade back this year. 

While Nagy didn't mention the Patriots specifically, the mid-to-late part of the first round is where the Patriots own a draft pick, his ties to the Patriots and how much sense it would make for New England to do that since they don't have a second rounder this year connects the dots enough for me. 

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Because the NFL is set to conduct its first ever virtual draft because of the COVID-19 pandemic, that could force coaches and GMs to try to conduct more trades ahead of the draft so it's one less thing that have to worry about come draft day. If that's the case, then Belichick is most definitely making phone calls to various organizations ahead of the draft. And if Nagy was referring to New England, then the Patriots may not be making a pick on Day 1 of the 2020 NFL Draft.