A few links from around the Web that caught the eye, while putting our own Patriots-type spin on it:
1. Patriots & danger of duplicating Jets' trade-up approach. One of the recent talk-radio debates around these parts centered on if the Patriots should be more like the Jets in terms of trading up in the draft. Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com notes that the Jets' approach has them in a compromising spot at this time. Not that the Patriots' approach has been perfect, but this is a snapshot of how trading up can be risky business.
2. Why the open market could lead to disappointed free agents. It's always a challenge projecting the free-agent market, and the value players will have in an open-bidding environment, and SI.com's Peter King paints a bleak picture for many players hoping to strike it big. King leads off his mailbag with a few thoughts on why teams might not be spending big this year, which could be good news for the Patriots in terms of retaining cornerback Aqib Talib, right tackle Sebastian Vollmer and receiver Wes Welker.
3. Grantland on if this is the end for the Patriots & Wes Welker. On Grantland.com, Robert Mays looks at the Patriots' free-agent dealings with Wes Welker, and why it's a concern if Welker isn't on the team in 2013.
4. Defense should be the focus. In his weekly mailbag, ESPN.com senior NFL writer John Clayton answers a Patriots-based question this way, "The problem on defense is a talent issue. Bill Belichick is great with schemes, but the team hasn't drafted well enough on defense."
5. Schefter on Patriots & Mallett. In his weekly mailbag (Insider content), ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter notes that the Patriots are high on backup quarterback Ryan Mallett. "Even Brian Daboll, who left Kansas City and joined the Patriots in the postseason, recognized that Mallett could have won the starting job with the Chiefs -- and with other NFL franchises," Schefter writes.