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April 25, 2013

LSU's Mathieu an absolute must for Pats

I’m begging Bill Belichick and Nick Caserio.

Make one phone call before you pull the trigger tonight. Call Mark Richt at the University of Georgia and utter the words, “Honey Badger.”

If Richt doesn’t fall into a shock-induced traumatic state, he will tell you exactly what you want to hear.

As far as cornerbacks go, Tyrann Mathieu is the real deal. As a big time playmaker, he is the anti-Manti.

Unlike the Notre Dame linebacker, he stepped up in the biggest games at LSU, made plays that harkened to one of his predecessors there, Patrick Peterson, and dominated as few corners can or ever have.

The New England Patriots pick 29th in the first round of the draft tonight, which kicks off on both the NFL Network and ESPN at 8 p.m.

The mock drafts and expert opinions nationwide predict that Mathieu’s name won’t be called until rounds 2 or 3, which are Friday night.

But he was booted from the team this fall. It’s widely believed that Mathieu repeatedly failed drug tests.

Mathieu is a third-rounder in name only. He brings the goods, when he’s on the football field.

And therein lies the conundrum for Belichick and Caserio.

How long can they push the pick until one of the other 31 teams start feeling a little frisky about Mathieu?

Mathieu has spent much of the last six weeks on the road, trying to ensure as many NFL execs that he has turned his life around.

That hasn’t stopped him from boastfully hosting a “First Round Draft” party at the SL Nightclub for friends and family tonight in New York City.

Sorry, I love the brashness. And I hope Belichick does, too.

As I stated yesterday, the Patriots needed a legitimate big-play wide receiver out of this draft. With the depth at the position in the draft field, that new receiver can come anywhere in the first three rounds.

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