If you haven’t heard by now, the New England Patriots have traded backup quarterback Ryan Mallett to the Houston Texans in exchange for a 2016 conditional seventh-round pick. This move is something that apparently has been a long time coming, although a lot of people thought it would go down back in May, rather than a week before the regular season begins.
Here are a few of my thoughts on this trade from a Patriots standpoint:
1. Smart move
Ryan Mallett would be gone in 2015 anyway, so it was smart for New England to try and at least get something in return. Yes, a conditional seventh round pick is pretty much nothing, but it is better than absolutely nothing. In addition to this, rookie Jimmy Garoppolo has proven that he is capable of leading this offense if Tom Brady went down, so there really was no need to carry three quarterbacks.
2. Extra space on 53-man roster
By trading Mallett, the Patriots had some extra room on the 53-man roster, which they have (at least initially) filled up. They signed defensive lineman Kelcy Quarles, as well as defensive tackle Bruce Gaston (had to release linebacker Chris White as well). I think those two will be much more useful to New England than a third quarterback will.
3. Mallett deserves this
Ryan Mallett really is a good player. He has worked hard in his time with the Patriots, he has a terrific arm, and he deserves an opportunity to perform in a meaningful situation. It was unlikely that he would ever get that opportunity in Foxboro, and on top of that, his vertical passing style doesn’t fit the Patriots offensive system. Garoppolo is much more suited to play in this system. I think Mallett could thrive down in Houston, and I hope he has a successful time down there.