The Patriots took Collins with their first pick and the 52nd overall choice in the draft. They obtained the pick from the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday night, trading down and out of the first round. The Patriots also had the 59th pick later in the second round Friday and two choices in the third round.
The 6-foot-3 1-2-inch, 250-pound Collins began his college career at defensive back and moved to linebacker in 2010. He had 21 sacks in his career at Southern Mississippi and led the team with 92 tackles last season.
On Saturday, the Patriots have one pick in the fourth round and three in the seventh.