Patriots Kendrick Bourne responds to trade rumors
With the Patriots’ struggles continuing nearly halfway through the season, several players on both sides of the ball have been rumored as trade candidates. Although some of the names come as no surprise, the latest rumor of Kendrick Bourne potentially being on the chopping block wasn’t as expected.
After having a career-best season last year, Bourne has been unable to replicate that in 2022. There have been alleged issues with the receiver and Matt Patricia, including punishment for arriving late to a meeting and Bourne expressing his disinterest in the possible new offensive scheme. But without any legitimacy regarding his position on the team, it all remains as speculation heightened by the media at this point.
Because of the team’s lack of integrating him into the offense this season, Bourne’s name was thrown into the mix as a potential trade prospect. Despite being signed through the 2023 season, the Patriots don’t appear interested in getting him more involved on the field, opening the door for a receiver-needy team to make an offer.
As the trade deadline is only days away, Bourne was asked on Friday about the rumors and how he feels about his second season in New England.
"“Yeah, absolutely. I want to be here. There’s no doubt about it. Yeah, it hasn’t been my best year so far or whatever the naysayers say, but I’m happy here. I’m just playing my role, like I said in the beginning (of the season). It’s about being patient. I’m not looking to be the stat guy, just trying to be in a position to help the team win, and I’ve always been that way. So, I’m just sticking to that motto and not getting too caught up in trying to get paid or whatever it may be.”"
The season began with a lot of drama surrounding Bourne stemming from the preseason. When he was only on the field for two snaps in week one against Miami, Robert Kraft reportedly expressed his dissatisfaction about the situation, increasing his snap count the following week. However, regardless of the support from the team’s owner, his presence on the field has still been few and far between.
When asked how he would feel if he was traded, Bourne stated he would accept it despite wanting to remain on the team, focusing on what’s ahead of him and not the “what-ifs?”
"“Just really not focusing on it. Just whatever happens, happens. If that’s what the coaches think they want to do and they think that’s what’s best, I’m on that wave. I would be cool with anything. Just really focusing on what I need to do and improving. Hopefully it’s more of other teams wanting me rather than my team not wanting me, so (I’m) just thinking about it that way also. (I’m) just focusing on getting better and the team and what’s going forward, instead of trying to fall into that trap.”"
Knowing what he is capable of bringing to the team makes his lack of involvement this season that much more puzzling. There are certainly more capable receivers on the team this year, but Bourne’s production in just his first season with a historically tricky offense to learn was extremely impressive. As the offense continues to struggle in multiple ways, it would benefit the team overall to include Bourne far more in game planning from now on.
If he will be traded, the receiver will get his answer by Tuesday, November 1st, at the trade deadline. Given his team-friendly contract and Kraft’s affinity for him, it’s unlikely he will be dealt this year. Most fans would agree that Bourne should remain on the team, too. But history has shown that Belichick does what Belichick wants. Anything can happen in the next few days.