Patriots

Patriots

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick does a remarkable job winning in the moment without destroying the team's ability to build long-term success.

The best way to build a dynasty is through the draft. When star players leave in free agency or are traded, the most cost-effective way to replace them is by using draft picks.  

Compensatory draft picks are given to teams who lose free agents in the offseason but don't replace those players with someone else during the free agency period. The Patriots lost Nate Solder to the New York Giants and Malcolm Butler to the Tennessee Titans in free agency before the 2018 season.

As a result, they could receive two compensatory picks in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft. That's what Nick Korte of OvertheCap.com projects for the Patriots. Korte also projects the Patriots to receive fifth-round and seventh-round compensatory picks for losing Danny Amendola and Cameron Fleming, respectively, in free agency. 

It's worth noting the league has not yet released its official list of compensatory draft picks for 2019.

The Patriots did a nice job replacing both Solder and Butler. Trent Brown had a solid season at left tackle, and Jason McCourty and J.C. Jackson were nice surprises at cornerback. Replacing Amendola was a little more difficult, and that was compounded by Rob Gronkowski's inconsistency and injuries. Moving on from Fleming was a good decision for the Pats.

The upcoming offseason will be a pivotal one for the future of the Patriots, but luckily for them, it looks like Belichick could have a bundle of valuable draft picks to use for talented young players or as part of trades.

 

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