Matt Groh Strongly Pushes Back Against Criticism Of Patriots Drafting

The New England Patriots selected Cole Strange with the No.29 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. This pick shocked fans because everyone thought that head coach Bill Belichick would go for a receiver or a cornerback. Let’s just say fans criticized the Patriots for selecting someone who was set to be a second-round pick. The team also traded up in the second round to get Tyquan Thornton. Belichick wasn’t looking for Round 1 grade players. Patriots director of player personnel Matt Groh addressed the criticism his Patriots team deals with.

Groh didn’t pay much attention to outside noise. The Patriots didn’t want to miss out on Strange. Belichick knew that Strange would be selected after their initial pick. That’s why he decided to get him before someone else.

Matt Groh addresses criticism, defends Patriots

The Patriots value Strange enough to get him in the first round.

“Yeah, I think that’s really easy for people to say,” Groh said. “Nobody knows what the teams are going to do behind you. When you come back up you don’t want to miss out on a player. I think it’s very easy. Sometimes you hear why — and not just in football — why did they trade for this guy? This team gave a second. Why didn’t we give a second? If they had just given it — well, if the other team’s second is better than your second, then you’re having to give up a one. It’s not all so cut and dry with where you think a guy is going to go, and you’ve got to look at what the rest of the board is telling you. If you value a player high enough, then you want that player to be a part of your team.

“That’s certainly how we feel about Cole. We’re really excited to have Cole aboard. You want to talk about value, the guy started at three positions on the offensive line. I think it’s kind of easy to pigeonhole him as a guard. He does a lot. This guy is really tough. He’s really smart. He’s almost 6-5, 300 pounds, and runs sub-5 seconds in the 40. There’s not a lot of humans out there that are doing that, benched 225, 31 times. This is a really big, strong, tough, athletic guy. If you value toughness, which we do, you value guys like Cole Strange.”

New England plays smart

Groh said that his team entered the NFL draft with one goal. They want to build a tough and explosive roster. Groh said the Patriots “take it all and consider it all.”

The Patriots planned to get faster and tougher on both ends of the ball. They need speedy players and getting Marcus Jones makes perfect sense.