Footage from the Patriots' draft room was aired on the team's television show, Patriots All Access, tonight.
Here were a few highlights:
Who's in the room? It looked like a very small draft room, with Bill Belichick sitting next to Director of Player Personnel Nick Caserio. Director of College Scouting Jon Robinson and football research director Ernie Adams were also in the room around a rectangular table. Owner Robert Kraft and team president Jonathan Kraft were a few others spotted. Overall, it looked like there were seven or eight people in the room.
Robert Kraft was trigger man on Cowboys deal. When the Patriots traded the 24th overall pick to the Cowboys, with Dallas coming up to get receiver Dez Bryant, Kraft was the one on the phone brokering the deal with Dallas owner Jerry Jones. Kraft negotiated with Jones based on what Bill Belichick wanted.
Belichick made courtesy call to Ozzie Newsome. Before striking the deal with Dallas with the 24th pick, Belichick called Ravens personnel chief Ozzie Newsome as a courtesy. The Ravens were picking at 25, and Belichick told him that Dallas was moving up unless he wanted the pick. Belichick and Newsome have a longtime friendship and this seemed to be a case where Belichick had the friendship in mind before striking the deal.
Patriots were decisive in moving back from 22. The Patriots traded down from the 22nd pick right when it was their turn on the clock. Belichick was on the speakerphone with Patriots personnel at draft headquarters in New York, and once he found out that the Bengals had picked at 21, he immediately stated that the team was moving down. That seemed to reflect that the Patriots' deal with the Broncos, whose draft room was headed by former Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, was struck well in advance.
Anxious moments on trade up with the Raiders. There were anxious moments in the room when the Patriots were in the process of trading up in the second round, from 44 to 42, with the Raiders. Belichick looked concerned that the deal wouldn't get done in time as the team balanced three aspects of the deal: 1) Striking the trade with Oakland; 2) Reporting the trade to the league office; 3) Writing tight end Rob Gronkowski's name on the card. Folks in the Patriots' draft room implored their runners at draft headquarters in New York to sprint up with the card. It was learned later in the show that the Patriots got the card in with less than five seconds remaining. The team was nervous that the Ravens, picking at 43, were ready to pounce on Gronkowski.
Patriots had multiple deals for 47th pick. The Patriots were considering proposals from the Packers and Cardinals for their second-round pick, 47th overall. When a late alteration was made to one of the deals, the Patriots decided to go with the Cardinals' proposal. An unspecified team called Belichick and tried to jump in late, but the deal with Arizona had already been agreed on by both sides.
The television show, which ran on WBZ-TV, is also scheduled to be available on the Patriots' official Web site, Patriots.com.