FOXBORO, Mass. — Patriots first-round pick Nate Solder got his first chance to tour Gillette Stadium on Friday afternoon, and the wide-eyed left tackle was impressed with what he saw.
Solder, the 17th pick Thursday night, had a 6 a.m. flight from Colorado on Friday morning. He met with head coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft, among others, during his tour through his new facility.
"I've always held this place in really high regard," Solder said. "I have a ton of respect for the players and for Mr. Kraft and what he's built here and this is an amazing place. I would not rather be any other place in the world, actually."
Solder wore No. 78 at Colorado, so he'll be looking for a different jersey number in New England, though he wouldn't offer a preference. Solder also grew up as a Broncos fan, so he laughed about yet another conversion of allegiance.
It's all part of the 24-hour whirlwind for a first-round pick, but despite the chaos, he was happy with his first impression.
"They win a lot of games here," Solder said. "They do things right here."