Every offseason, New England Patriots fans convince themselves this is the year the team will splurge on a big-ticket wide receiver. While the jury is still out on this offseason, almost all of the premier free agents are off the board, so any newcomer will likely need to be acquired through the draft.
Luckily for the Patriots, the 2022 WR class is loaded so they should be able to select an immediate contributor in either the first or second round. While there’s something to be said for finding good value at the position, New England’s rivals have really moved the needle to equip their QBs with star pass catchers.
Think about it. The Bills traded for Stefon Diggs, the Browns traded for Amari Cooper, the Raiders acquired Davante Adams and the Titans struck a deal for Julio Jones, though that didn’t work out how they envisioned.
According to the latest buzz, another one of the Patriots’ rivals could soon strike a blockbuster trade for an elite receiver.
Long story short, the Chiefs have granted Tyreek Hill permission to seek a trade after extension negotiations stalled out and the Dolphins and Jets are said to be the two teams in pursuit of the perennial Pro Bowler.
The Patriots’ rivals are looking to trade for Chiefs superstar WR Tyreek Hill.
The silver lining is the Bills aren’t involved in the sweepstakes.
However, one of the Dolphins or Jets landing Hill’s services would be a terrible look for the Patriots. Not only would it draw attention to the team’s inability (or refusal) to add an upper-echelon wideout, but Miami adding Hill might just give them the edge over New England in regard to the AFC power rankings.
While Tua Tagovailoa is a limited quarterback, pairing Hill with Jaylen Waddle would give the Dolphins a ridiculously deep WR corps. Waddle’s rookie season got lost in the shuffle of Ja’Marr Chase’s record-setting year, but 104 receptions for 1,015 yards and six touchdowns in Year 1 is nothing to sniff at.
The Jets adding Hill wouldn’t really scare anybody, but facing the three-time All-Pro twice a season would still give the Patriots fits. With a revamped offensive line and improved tight end play, pairing Hill with Corey Davis, Elijah Moore and a potential first-round talent could make the Jets a respectable opponent again.
UPDATE: The Dolphins have traded for Tyreek Hill.
Well, so much for the Jets striking fear into the Patriots, because the Dolphins unsurprisingly came out on top. Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Dolphins have acquired Hill from Kansas City for a whopping five draft picks, including a first, second and third in 2022, as well as a fourth- and sixth-rounder in 2023.
As soon as the trade terms were finalized, Miami expectedly made Hill the highest-paid receiver in the league, signing him to a four-year, $120 million extension, including $72.2 million in guaranteed money.
The good news is it wasn’t Buffalo that acquired Hill, so it’s not a worse-case scenario for the Patriots. However, the Dolphins were the next-worst thing and you have to think they’ve leapfrogged New England in the AFC pecking order after this blockbuster.
Don’t worry, Pats nation. You’ve still got Kendrick Bourne, Jakobi Meyers and Nelson Agholor to counter the Dolphins’ firepower.