Patriots reportedly explored Deshaun Watson trade before allegations arose

Texans QB Deshaun Watson (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Texans QB Deshaun Watson (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

After Cam Newton’s inconsistent 2020 campaign, the New England Patriots were always going to be in the market for a quarterback this offseason.

While they did end up re-signing the 31-year-old former MVP, however, that doesn’t mean they didn’t consider other potential options.

After all, the Patriots reportedly inquired about Jimmy Garoppolo at the start of the offseason, but were ultimately turned off by the 49ers’ delusional asking price. We even heard links to Raiders backup Marcus Mariota for a brief point in time.

Before all that, we were loudly advocating for the Patriots to pursue Deshaun Watson, who was a hot commodity on the trade front earlier this offseason before his disturbing sexual assault and harassment allegations derailed any chance of him being moved.

Well, it appears New England was actually eyeing a Watson trade before his legal troubles first came to light.

According to reporter John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, the Patriots were one of eight teams who showed interest in the star quarterback.

The Patriots reportedly had their eyes on Deshaun Watson before his sexual assault allegations came to light.

As Patriots fans will recall, Watson was going to be one of the most coveted players this offseason leading up to the draft. With all the quarterback movement that had already materialized by the time he requested a trade, he seemed like a surefire bet to be dealt.

Then, however, Watson was slammed with a bombardment of sexual harassment and assault allegations, which grew in number for a multi-week stretch before ultimately capping out at 22.

Given their fruitful salary cap situation of bounty of draft capital, the Patriots seemed like an ideal destination for the three-time Pro Bowler. If you take one look at their free agent spending spree, they’d be a legitimate championship contender in 2021 and beyond with Watson as their QB.

However, there was no way they could justify trading for a player, let alone a superstar of the former No. 12 overall pick’s acclaim, with his legal issues far from resolved. The Patriots are notorious for tip-toeing around the imaginary honorable line, but not even they could dabble with accusations as serious as the ones being made against Watson.

As crazy as it sounds, this could all end up being a blessing in disguise for the Patriots, as they seem poised to trade up and potentially draft their quarterback of the future this week. Whatever ends up happening, fans can at least sleep comfortably at night knowing the front office did exhaust all their options at QB at one point this offseason, like reports indicated.