The New England Patriots hold the No. 31 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, which begins on Thursday. Many believe that the Patriots will trade their spot in the draft order, but if they remain where they are, there may be a new prospect name in the mix.
Like others, I expect New England to trade one of its two first-round picks. If they stay at No. 31, though, they have done a lot of work on corners. It would be a surprise, but I continue to hear strong reports on Vandy corner Casey Hayward. New England did a lot of work on him. If New England does deal with Cleveland, and move back atop the second round, then Howard may be in play there as well.
The Patriots definitely seem to be interesting in selecting a cornerback at some point in this year's draft. Hayward would be an interesting choice.