Bill Belichick values draft picks, for any round, more than the average NFL coach. In fact, some might even think that he values some picks a little too much. After watching a pattern of the Patriots trading down, stocking up on future picks, and settling for a lower draft selection, fans and analysts everywhere were shocked when the team actually chose to trade up and draft Chandler Jones and Dont'a Hightower in the 2012 NFL Draft. Trading up for a higher pick is something that we had not seen from Belichick in a very long time.

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The Atlanta Falcons made jaws to drop when they traded five NFL draft picks, including two first-round selections, in order to receive the 6th overall pick in the 2011 Draft, which they used to draft WR Julio Jones. According to Michale Holley's book "War Room: The Legacy of Bill Belichick and the Art of Building the Perfect Team", Belichick advised the Falcons against this decision. Holley documents how the legendary coach was against the idea when talking to Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff, due to the high price/ A former Patriots assistant, Dimitroff clearly had a different philosophy on the value of draft picks, as the trade was finalized.

Two years later, Julio Jones is a star receiver, yet BB seemed to avoid the question yesterday when he was asked to reevaluate his advice to not make the trade:
"I think Julio has done a great job for them," Belichick answered. "He's an excellent football player, period. As a receiver, he's got good good strength, good speed, good ball skills. He makes some acrobatic catches, goes up and takes the ball away from defenders. He's strong after the catch. Tough guy to tackle. He's also very good in the running game, a good blocker. He's a guy that will go in and get linebackers and safeties in the running game; he's probably about as good as anyone in the league. So it's not just his receiving skills, although they're very good. I think he's a complete football player. I know he's a tough kid, and a hard worker, and is great for their program. I'm sure that they're very happy he's on their team, because he does a good job in every area." 

Though he gives Jones very high praise, Belichick completely avoided the part of the question where he was asked if his opinion on the trade had changed. Jones is sure to cause Belichick and the defense headaches as they prepare to defend against such talent, but maybe BB still doesn't believe he was worth everything that the Falcons gave up to get him. A little food for thought for Patriots fans who truly know how much Bill Belichick values draft picks. Do you think Julio Jones was worth the trade? Sound off in the comments below or tweet @PatriotsLife !

Anthony Aidonidis

Anthony Aidonidis 9/25/2013 01:40:00 PM Edit

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