The New England Patriots run one of the most tight-lipped organizations in the National Football League. So with ten days left before the start of the 2011 draft, it’s noticeable how public their alleged interest in Alabama running back Mark Ingram has become.
SI.com’s Peter King wrote in today’s MMQB column that the Patriots “love” Ingram. Hours later, it was revealed that the 2009 Heisman winner is en route to Foxboro for an official pre-draft visit.
“Headed to the airport, off to Boston,” Ingram wrote on Twitter. “Another week living in the airport.”
Ian Rapoport of the Boston Herald believes the Patriots’ interest in Ingram is “genuine,” even if Bill Belichick’s team doesn’t typically go about business so openly.
WEEI.com’s Christopher Price suggests Ingram’s Patriots visit could be mostly for medical purposes.
The Patriots hold the 17th, 28th, and 33rd picks in the draft, and Ingram could conceivably be available at each of those selections. It was recently reported that Ingram’s been removed from at least two draft boards due to a knee condition, and NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock questioned Ingram’s first-round value even before the injury problems came to light.
We’re not sure what to believe. But we wouldn’t be surprised if the Patriots’ pre-draft pursuit of Mark Ingram is all a smokescreen, and they don’t want him.
We also wouldn’t be surprised if they drafted him.