The Houston Texans might be entertaining the idea of trading DeAndre Hopkins, and the New England Patriots could stand to add offensive weapons.
Could there be a fit? One NFL Insider believes so.
With free agency set to open this week, NBC Sports’ Peter King wrote there was some pre-draft chatter that, essentially, the Texans might listen to offers for their star wideout. He then began to float potential matches, and kicked around the idea of the Texans and Patriots (among other teams) swinging a deal.
“Houston is currently in draft hell, without a top-50 pick in 2020 and 2021, and coach Bill O’Brien has huge needs to fill on his offensive line, in the secondary and overall youth on the front seven; J.J. Watt and Whitney Mercilus will play this year at 31 and 30.
“What could hurt O’Brien if he’s serious about moving Hopkins is he’ll play this year at 28, and he wasn’t as explosive last year as he’d been . . . and the fact that this is one of the best years in history for wideouts in the draft. How tempting Hopkins would be, though, to teams with cap money. The Patriots, at 23, would be a fascinating match (they might need a mid- or late-round pick back with Hopkins), or the Niners at 31, Giants at 36 or Dolphins at 39.”
Of course, King isn’t sourcing anything here, so take this all with a grain of salt. But suffice to say the Patriots probably would be able to sell Tom Brady on coming back if they landed Hopkins. Even with a bit more salary cap flexibility, though, it would be hard to see the Patriots making such a deal happen.