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Hot Button: Trade up or trade back?

In a "Hot Button" issue now featured on ESPNBoston.com, the question is asked: Should the Patriots trade up/stand pat or trade back?

ESPN.com senior writer John Clayton takes the trade up/stand pat route.

"The only problem with moving backward this year -- or any year -- is that it lessens odds of finding a potential Pro Bowl pass-rusher or a long-term starter along the offensive line," Clayton writes. "Though the Patriots may not want to admit it, this is a critical year in their building efforts."

Clayton's view is opposed by Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com.

"Barring an unexpected player falling down the board, the club should hit the sweet spots with a few of its first six selections, and then take the rest of the picks and push them into 2012 and perhaps even 2013. It's all labor based," Reiss writes. "The possibility that teams' offseason programs will either be eliminated or significantly shortened as owners and players continue to play "courtroom football" creates a dynamic that could make it hard for rookies to make an immediate impact."

Readers can vote on what they think the best course of action is for the Patriots this year.