Update: The draft pick compensation could be as high as a two or as low as a five depending on performance.
The Raiders have traded its disgruntled DE Derrick Burgess to the New England Patriots for a 2010 3rd round pick and 2011 5th round pick. This according to a tweet from former Raiders executive Michael Lombardi who now writes for the National Football Post.
For a 30-year-old player who is a liability against the run and accumulated just 3.5 sacks last season, it appears to be a good deal. He joins ex-Raiders Randy Moss and Andrew Walter in New England and is expected to be converted to Linebacker.
The LB position as it further exposes Burgess’ coverage and run support liabilities. The Patriots fans immediate reaction to the trade was similar to that of Randy Moss, but they should not forget the Doug Gabriel trade.
Burgess is on a one year deal, he is 30, and he is changing positions.
Burgess is more of a technician. He used his hands well to separate from the slower RT. I have long been a critic because he accumulated stats by beating the slower RTs and didn’t match up against the better LT.
As a linebacker Burgess will have to rely more on timing on blitzes and he may be matched against any player on the line. That includes TE that are as fast as he is, but that he may be able to overpower and also fast strong LTs and much larger LGs that can clog him up at the line.
In the past several years, he hasn’t produced sacks despite his complete disregard for plugging the running lanes. He simply went for sacks every time. At linebacker, Burgess will be forced to plug running gaps. We really have no idea how good he is at doing so. If we do, then we know he does it poorly.
Burgess being a pass rusher will be in on passing downs and will have to adjust to dropping into coverage occasionally. This is something he was rarely required to do in a Raiders uniform. Expect opposing defenses to attack him through the air.
That said, at times last season it was clear Burgess was not putting in the effort. If his effort level increases in New England like Randy Moss, he can register 8 or more sacks.
I was holding out hope that we were able to swindle New England for one of its three 3rd round picks in 2010, but I guess not.