Can the Pats Trade Up for UNC’s Robert Quinn?


Recently, Patriots blogger Jeff Howe wrote about why the Patriots should trade up for UNC DE Robert Quinn. While Quinn played defensive end at UNC, he would project to be an outside linebacker in the Patriots’ 3-4 defense, but could also play end in sub packages. Despite not playing in 2010 due to an NCAA suspension because of receiving benefits from a sports agent, Quinn is still regarded as one of the draft’s top prospects. More importantly for the Patriots, Quinn is considered one of the top pass rushers in the draft, a position the Pats are sorely in need of. As a sophomore in 2009, Quinn had 11 sacks, 19 tackles for loss, 6 forced fumbles, and 15 QB pressures. When Howe wrote about the Pats’ possible interest in Quinn, Quinn was projected to go no later than 8th overall. Recently, his stock has started to slip, and in NFL Network analyst Charles Davis’ recent mock draft, he has Quinn going 12th overall to the Minnesota Vikings. That puts Quinn squarely in play for the Pats to trade up and snag the potent pass rusher. What will it take?

While the Patriots have the picks to trade up into the top 10 if they want to, realistically, they will probably not want to give up the number of picks it would take to do so. If Robert Quinn lasts to 10th overall, which is held by the Washington Redskins, he will be in a prime area for the Pats to trade up and not give up a plethora of picks. What makes the trade more likely with either the Redskins or the Vikings at 12th overall is the fact that both teams need help at QB. There will likely not be any quarterbacks worth drafting that high when those two teams pick, but trading back with the Pats would put them more in the range to draft one of the quarterbacks in the next tier of talent level.

While the trade could involve a variety of factors that could drive the price up or down, we can get a relative idea of what it would cost by using the Draft Value Chart developed by Jimmy Johnson when he was with the Dallas Cowboys. Trading future draft picks could be risky because next year’s draft is not guaranteed to occur due to no CBA being in place, so we’ll stick just the picks the Pats have this year.

To trade with the Redskins to 10th overall…

The 10th overall pick is worth 1300 points. The Pats could trade their 17th overall pick (950 points) and their 33rd overall pick (580 points), move up to 10, and grab one of the Redskins’ late-round picks as well to make up the difference. Another package the Patriots could put together is the 17th overall pick, their second 2nd round pick, 60th overall (300 points), and their 4th round pick, 125th overall (47 points) and get close enough to make the trade. The Redskins currently do not have 3rd or 4th round picks.

To trade with the Texans to 11th overall…

The 11th overall pick is worth 1250 points. The Patriots could trade their 17th overall pick (950 points) and their second 2nd round pick, 60th overall (300 points), and would hit the point value right on the head.

To trade with the Vikings to 12th overall…

The 12th overall pick is worth 1150 points. The Patriots could trade their 17th overall pick (950 points) and their first 3rd round pick, 74th overall (220 points), and move up to #12 and possibly get a 6th or 7th round pick as well.

I don’t see Quinn getting past the Vikings at #12. If the Patriots have Robert Quinn rated highly on their draft board and his value makes it worth it for them to move up, they can certainly do so and not give up the kitchen sink. Also, check out the picture below. It’s a picture of Robert Quinn from high school while he was be recruited. Look at the jersey. Fate?