The New England Patriots typically are at the center of the action ahead of the NFL trade deadline, but that was not the case this year.
Bill Belichick’s club opted not to make any trades ahead of the 2018 trade deadline, which came and went at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
The Patriots had completed at least one deadline deal in five of the previous six seasons, including blockbusters involving Jamie Collins in 2016 and Jimmy Garoppolo in 2017.
Though they ultimately stood pat, the Patriots reportedly were involved in extensive trade talks over the weekend, with multiple reports indicating they were pushing hard to land a “premium” wide receiver.
New England was linked to both Demaryius Thomas and Golden Tate but missed out on both. The Patriots made an offer to the Denver Broncos for Thomas but were outbid by the Houston Texans, according to multiple reports.
The Patriots also reportedly showed interest in bringing Collins back to Foxboro to bolster their linebacking corps, but he wound up staying put in Cleveland.
Thomas and Tate, who was traded from the Detroit Lions to the Philadelphia Eagles, were just two of several big-name players who changed teams in the days and hours before the deadline. Others included safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (Green Bay Packers to Washington Redskins), edge rusher Dante Fowler (Jacksonville Jaguars to Los Angeles Rams) and running back Ty Montgomery (Packers to Baltimore Ravens), all of whom were dealt Tuesday.
The Patriots’ lone trade this season came more than a month ago when they sent a fourth-round draft pick to the Browns in exchange for troubled wideout Josh Gordon and a seventh-rounder. Gordon since has emerged as a starter in Josh McDaniels’ offense, playing upward of 60 offensive snaps in each of the last three games despite a report indicating he’d be benched for the start of Monday night’s 25-6 win over the Buffalo Bills.
The victory over Buffalo was the Patriots’ fifth in a row. After dropping two of their first three games, they now sit atop the AFC East at 6-2 entering a Sunday night matchup with Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.
Thumbnail photo via Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports Images