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  • May 3, 2015

The Sun Chronicle : Patriots

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Belichick focuses on stop-gap plan in drafting for Patriots' defense

<p>Bill Belichick may not provide much in the way of excitement on Draft Day, but it’s because he has kept the team consistently good over 15 years.</p>

Bill Belichick may not provide much in the way of excitement on Draft Day, but it’s because he has kept the team consistently good over 15 years.

FOXBORO - Trader Bill toned it down this year.

Bill Belichick made only two trades for the New England Patriots during the 2015 NFL Draft, but still managed to come away with more players than he would have if he had stood pat for the duration of the seven rounds.

Whether he made a dent in some of the holes that developed in the team following its 28-24 win over the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX remains to be seen. But there was a perceived need on defense and Belichick dove headlong into it - selecting seven players on the defensive side of the ball as opposed to three on offense and one specialist.

At the top of his priority list were a nose tackle to replace the departed Vince Wilfork, and two defensive ends and two outside linebackers to put more juice into the Patriots' pass rush.

Offensive priorities were clearly the interior of the line. It could be argued that the fifth-round selection of a long-snapper with a pending military commitment was a throwaway pick, and a tight end picked late in the draft was a jersey filler for training camp.

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