Patriots: 3 blockbuster midseason trades Pats can pull off in 2020

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /
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Bucs TE OJ Howard Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /

2.Third- And Sixth-Round Pick in 2021 for OJ Howard

Bucs TE OJ Howard would add a needed element of dynamism to the Patriots offense.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers stressed on numerous occasions throughout the offseason that tight end OJ Howard wasn’t for sale. However, if the right offer presented itself, we fully believe they would entertain the idea of unloading him.

Sure, no TE in Tampa has emerged as Tom Brady’s undisputed favorite target thus far, but it’s clear that Rob Gronkowski, who’s been on the field for close to 80% of the offensive snaps, is No. 1 on the depth chart. Don’t let the former All-Pro’s (understandable) struggles upon his return to football distract you from the fact that Howard was hardly targeted in 2019, and he would surely relish the chance to become the main guy on another team.

Enter the Patriots, who ironically created more of a logjam for Howard on the Bucs by agreeing to send Gronk to them this offseason. That trade proved the respective organizations are more than capable of navigating through negotiations. More important, however, is New England’s gaping hole at tight end.

We all remember how much Cam Newton loved throwing to Greg Olsen in Carolina, and he simply doesn’t have a middle of the field security blanket to turn to when his wide receivers are blanketed in coverage. A third- and sixth-round selection in the 2020 Draft should be plenty enough to pry Howard from Tampa.