With the Super Bowl over and the 2012 NFL season in the past, teams now turn their attention to the 2013 draft. The New England Patriots are picking in the 29th spot after a disappointing playoff loss, and some people are projecting them to upgrade the wide receiver position.
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SB Nation's Matthew Fairburn released his latest mock draft on Monday, and he has the Patriots taking Louisiana Tech receiver Quinton Patton. The small-school player's stock is starting to rise after an impressive Senior Bowl performance:
Not a household name at this point, Quinton Patton was one of the most consistent players in the country this season. Given his precise route running and solid hands, some have compared him to Reggie Wayne. The Patriots can't get by another season without upgrading the wide receiver spot.
Wes Welker is a free agent, and his future with the team is very much up in the air. There are a ton of wide receivers projected to go in the late first-round, so it's possible to see the thrifty Patriots cut ties with Welker and go with a cheaper rookie. Cordarrelle Patterson, Tavon Austin and DeAndre Hopkins could also be available at this spot.