Yesterday, Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson told ESPN that he may not end up staying with the Texans in the future.
“When you’ve been somewhere for a long time, nobody’s been here as long as I have. I’ve been thinking about things this offseason. Kind of wonder if this is still the place for me.”
So this begs the question…should the Patriots try to trade for Johnson?
The immediate reaction from all Pats fans should an emphatic yes. Tom Brady hasn’t had a legitimate deep threat since the days of Randy Moss, and despite getting up there in age (32), Johnson can still produce. New England has a decent group of receivers, but there is no elite weapon, save for Rob Gronkowski, who isn’t even a wideout. Inserting Johnson into that lineup would instantly create opportunities for every other player, not to mention the kind of production you will get from Johnson himself.
Now the biggest question regarding a potential trade is what Houston will want in return. Obviously, Ryan Mallett will have to be involved. The Texans did draft Tom Savage in the NFL draft, but I don’t think they want to rely on a rookie for the entire 2014 season. But simply shipping Mallett down to Houston won’t warrant them receiving a player like Johnson. So how high of a draft pick would the Texans want? In my opinion, a second rounder would be fair to both sides. In his prime, I think Johnson would be worth giving up a top selection. But now that he is in his thirties, a second pick pick seems like the right price.
If you are in charge of the Patriots, would you go for this trade? I personally would. New England helped Brady’s defense tremendously over the course of this offseason, but they haven’t given him that dynamic playmaker that would put them over the top on offense. If Bill Belichick is able to pull this out, and you combine that defense of his with this new and improved offense, the rest of the NFL better watch out.