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APC Mock Draft 2014: New England Patriots Select Louis Nix III

The Patriots find an intended successor to Vince Wilfork towards the end of round one.

Giant men like Nix should not wear number 1.
Giant men like Nix should not wear number 1.
Jonathan Daniel

On the clock with the third pick of the day and the 29th selection overall, I will be drafting on behalf of the New England Patriots.


The 2013 edition of the New England Patriots was as usual a winning team, posting a 12-4 record and a playoff win on their way to the AFC Championship game which they lost to the Denver Broncos. Tom Brady and company operated another top-10 offense that featured one of the better and more balanced running games behind Stevan Ridley and LeGarrette Blount, while the loss of Wes Welker in free agency was offset somewhat by the continued emergence of Julian Edelman and the arrival of Danny Amendola.

The defense hemorrhaged yardage in 2013 though, finishing 26th in the league in that category despite allowing the 10th-fewest points in the NFL. The run defense was especially bad, giving up more rushing yards than only two other teams in the league. Injuries helped to derail that unit though, with intended starters Vince Wilfork, Jerod Mayo, Brandon Spikes, Adrian Wilson, and Tommy Kelly all ending up on injured reserve.

Wilfork was signed to a new three-year contract to stay in New England, but it is highly unlikely that he plays out that full term. While the Patriots will have a handful of those injured players back (Spikes is now a Buffalo Bill and Wilson has been released), their defense desperately could use a shot of youth, especially in key positions in the running game.

With the 29th overall selection, the New England Patriots pick...

Player: Louis Nix III
Position: Nose Tackle
School: Notre Dame
Year: Junior (RS)

In Nix, many people see a young Vince Wilfork - an anchor at nose tackle who can hold the point in the run game and provide some pass rush help as well. Nix's arrival would help the Patriots phase Wilfork out, while helping to keep both players' snap counts down and in turn make them both more effective.

For some teams, Nix would likely be a two-down player, which makes a first-round value questionable. Still, for a team which appears ready to move on soon from their long-time nose tackle of the past, picking Nix here makes a lot of sense.

Round One Summary

Pick Team Player Position School
1 Houston Texans Blake Bortles QB Central Florida
2 St. Louis Rams (via WAS) Jadeveon Clowney DE South Carolina
3 Jacksonville Jaguars Khalil Mack OLB Buffalo
4 Cleveland Browns Johnny Manziel QB Texas A&M
5 Oakland Raiders Sammy Watkins WR Clemson
6 Atlanta Falcons Greg Robinson OT Auburn
7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mike Evans WR Texas A&M
8 Minnesota Vikings Teddy Bridgewater QB Louisville
9 Buffalo Bills Jake Matthews OT Texas A&M
10 Detroit Lions Justin Gilbert CB Oklahoma State
11 Tennessee Titans Aaron Donald DT Pittsburgh
12 New York Giants Eric Ebron TE North Carolina
13 St. Louis Rams Ha Ha Clinton-Dix S Alabama
14 Chicago Bears Darqueze Dennard CB Michigan State
15 Pittsburgh Steelers Anthony Barr OLB UCLA
16 Dallas Cowboys Timmy Jernigan DT Florida State
17 Baltimore Ravens Taylor Lewan OT Michigan
18 New York Jets Odell Beckham, Jr. WR LSU
19 Miami Dolphins Zack Martin OT Notre Dame
20 Arizona Cardinals Dee Ford DE/OLB Auburn
21 Green Bay Packers C.J. Mosley ILB Alabama
22 Philadelphia Eagles Brandin Cooks WR Oregon State
23 Kansas City Chiefs Marqise Lee WR USC
24 Cincinnati Bengals Bradley Roby CB Ohio State
25 San Diego Chargers Kyle Fuller CB Virginia Tech
26 Cleveland Browns (via IND) Kelvin Benjamin WR Florida State
27 New Orleans Saints Ryan Shazier LB Ohio State
28 Carolina Panthers Cyrus Kouandjio OT Alabama
29 New England Patriots Louis Nix III DT Notre Dame

That's all for today - check back tomorrow for the final three picks in round 1 of our mock draft.