Alex Smith scores a touchdown against Green Bay last season. (Reuters)
FOXBOROUGH -- Patriots coach Bill Belichick held his standard press conference following the morning practice of rookie minicamp, and he was asked about the team trading for veteran tight end Alex Smith.
"That's something that has kind of been, I don't want to say in the works, but has been out there for a while," he said. "We just felt like, given the player and the situation and what the compensation was, it was something that we wanted to do. I feel like Alex is a good player. He's done a lot of different things for Tampa Bay -- in the passing game, in the running game, pass protection. Smart guy. Athletic. In Coach Gruden's offense, which they ran down there, you see him doing a lot of different things, lined up in different spots -- playing on the line, playing off the line, playing in motion, playing split out, different kind of routes and so forth they run. I think you see him with a versatile set of skills. Can play in the kicking game. Athletic. We'll see how all that comes together, but we felt at this point that it gives us good depth at that position and we felt like the compensation was fair, so we went ahead and did it."