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Patriots grab a Gator

Posted by Albert Breer  April 23, 2010 07:50 PM

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I advocated taking a rush linebacker-type from Florida, but it wasn't this one.

The Patriots just selected Jermaine Cunningham with the 53rd overall pick. The Bengals, at 54, took the freakish Carlos Dunlap, who was the guy I stumped for.

Of course, this has Urban Meyer written all over it. Bill Belichick's got a close relationship with the Florida coach, so it's possible that Meyer advised him to take Cunningham over Dunlap.

Cunningham's sack production was decent at Florida, with 19.5 in his final three years as a Gator. He came in a little over 6-foot-3 and 266 pounds at the combine, and is said to have good athletic ability and instincts, but has some problems bending, coming off blocks and playing in space.

Couldn't make this up: Was arrested in December for assault after he was told at a restaurant that he had to pay for a bag chips. Apparently, he started hitting an employee with empty cups. Seriously.

We'll figure more out about that on the conference call. This, of course, is the first stab the Patriots have taken at addressing the pass rush.

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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