Patriots should bully Dave Gettleman into first-round trade
By Jerry Trotta
The pre-draft buzz linking the New England Patriots to trading up for one of the top quarterback prospects has simmered a bit over the last week or so, but that doesn’t mean fans should write it off as a possibility.
After all, reports have started to emerge about teams with higher picks — like the Falcons and Panthers, both of whom seemingly have their starting quarterbacks lined up for next season — considering trading back as a means to stockpile draft picks.
Well, with the 2021 Draft officially just one week away, another team has reportedly entered the trade back mix.
According to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, the Giants have had internal discussions about trading out of the No. 11 overall pick.
This would be an extreme rarity, as Dave Gettleman has never traded back in the eight drafts he’s overseen as a general manager.
In other words, the Patriots and Bill Belichick should absolutely consider bullying the man who’s never made a good draft decision into making a first-round trade.
The latest pre-draft rumor could work in the Patriots’ favor.
This rumor, which should have Patriots fans licking their chops, has no doubt made its way to Bill Belichick’s office already. We all know the de facto GM loves exploiting loopholes and heisting incompetent executives in trades, and this opportunity falls right under that category.
Since Gettleman has zero experience trading back, he likely has far less of an idea than he should about how to approach such a move. In other words, the Patriots could potentially trade up No. 11 without giving up a back-breaking haul of draft capital. If you’re going to trade up, that’s the way to do it.
The question Patriots fans are asking themselves is whether moving up four picks would position the team to draft a quarterback. The answer? We don’t know. It’s possible all of Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, Justin Fields, Mac Jones and Trey Lance will be off the board at that point.
However, we can also picture a scenario in which one of them falls right to the Patriots. Even if that doesn’t happen, Belichick can still get his hands on an elite talent — like linebacker Micah Parsons or the best remaining wide receiver (Jaylen Waddle would be sick), for instance.
The Patriots are simply in a weird spot at No. 15 overall. While they can still get an impact player if they were to stay put, doing so would come with the risk of letting one of the premier talents in this year’s loaded class being scooped up by another team.
That simply cannot happen after they spent nearly $300 million in free agency.
Moving up four spots to No. 11 overall was never going to cost a draining return package. Since the inexperienced Gettleman, at least in terms of trading back, is running the show for the Giants, it might cost the Patriots even less than we initially surmised.