After losing Akiem Hicks and Sealver Siliga to free agency this season, the Patriots were in the market for depth on the interior defensive line, even after the addition of Terrance Knighton. With an extremely deep defensive tackle draft class, the Patriots were able to pick up Nebraska junior Vincent Valentine with the 96th pick of the 2016 NFL Draft.
Coming out of college, many were surprised that the 6-foot-3 5/8, 329 pound bid-bodied defensive tackle left college after his junior season, as he was not effective and injured more compared to his sophomore campaign. In 36 games at Nebraska, Valentine had seven sacks and 16 tackles for loss, but, as I mentioned before, ankle and knee injuries limited him to seven starts last season.
As a 329 pound man, one would expect him to resemble Vince Wilfork, but he is surprisingly athletic for his size. But, as one may also expect, he does not have the best motor and will tire quickly if used too much. Because of his versatility, Valentine is able to play and entice coaches in 4-3 and 3-4 schemes alike, which should make Bill Belichick giddy.
All in all, every single player the Patriots drafted brought extreme versatility to an already elite team.
Final Grade: B
Be sure to check back in for continue coverage of Day 3.