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New England Patriots interested in Johnthan Banks

Mississippi State Bulldogs Johnthan Banks has fallen on draft boards a bit, and that has opened up an opportunity for the New England Patriots to select Banks with the 29th pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. A bigger corner who is adept in press coverage, Banks’s stock fell largely due to a poor showing at the combine (4.6 forty).

But at his pro day at Mississippi State in front of 25 teams, Banks ran forty times of 4.51 and 4.52, and those times should vault his status. Several new mock drafts have tabbed Johnthan Banks to the New England Patriots, and that would be a nice pick for the Pats in the late first if they choose to add another cornerback. With the uncertainty surrounding Aqib Talib‘s future and Alfonzo Dennard‘s possible jail time, the Patriots could definitely go that route.

Now here is what makes things even more interesting. Sports Illustrated’s draft guru Tony Pauline tweeted yesterday that a huge rumor during the Bulldogs pro day was that the Patriots are “considering” Banks in the first round. That is a rumor that I buy, since Bill Belichick likes big, physical corners like Banks.

The issue with Banks is going to be his speed, but he didn’t get burned as often as Desmond Trufant did in college. I still view Banks as a better prospect than Trufant despite the gap in their Combine performances, but Banks is only a hair better than Trufant in my eyes. Still, that’s good value with the 29th pick, and we’ll see if Banks quelled his speed concerns at his pro day.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.

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