Quarterback long was expected to be the greatest area of uncertainty for the Patriots entering the 2020 NFL season.
There’s still much to be figured out at signal-caller for New England, but there arguably are more question marks surrounding another position in Foxboro as the new campaign approaches.
The Patriots’ current linebacker group leaves a bit to be desired. Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins and Elandon Roberts all found new homes in free agency, and Dont’a Hightower elected to opt out of the 2020 season. New England now will turn to the likes of Ja’Whaun Bentley and Chase Winovich to lead its LB corps, while rookies Josh Uche, Anfernee Jennings and Cassh Maluia could be thrust into prominent roles for the get-go.
In an effort to address the matter, The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia suggests the Patriots swing a trade for a linebacker. Kapadia on Monday listed six deals he believes should go down prior to Week 1, including New England sending a sixth-round pick to Washington for Ryan Anderson.
Kapadia believes the hypothetical trade makes sense for both sides. Anderson, a 2017 second-round pick, logged four sacks and 44 total tackles last season. He’s set to make roughly $1.2 million this season before hitting free agency next spring. Washington would be able to obtain an asset in exchange for Anderson, who, as Kapadia notes, could see diminished playing time in 2020 as the franchise transitions to Ron Rivera’s defense.
While teams might be a bit more reluctant to make trades given the current state of the NFL, we probably shouldn’t rule anything out when it comes to Bill Belichick. The Patriots head coach always is looking for ways to improve his team, and he’s proved in the past he’s not afraid to pull the trigger on a trade in the days leading up to the start of a season.