Receivers the Patriots should consider trading for this offseason
CONTRACT: Fourth-year of rookie deal
2022 STATS: 15 games – 67 receptions, 972 yards, six touchdowns, 14.5 YPC
CAP SPACE IMPLICATIONS FOR 2023: Base salary – $2,681,769 | Cap hit – $4,834,128
If Hopkins isn’t an option due to the contract or his age, Broncos receiver Jerry Jeudy is an excellent option. Not only is he just 23 years old and going into his fourth season, but Jeudy also has an established relationship with Patriots’ quarterback Mac Jones.
The pair attended the University of Alabama and were roommates when Jones was a freshman. During the 2019 season, when the quarterback was a red-shirted sophomore, Alabama’s starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa went down with a season-ending injury, making Jones the quarterback for the final four games. It may have been just four games, but that chemistry is not easily replicated in the NFL and could be a massive help for Jones as he will be overcoming more changes in his third pro season.
For the Broncos, however, they don’t necessarily have much reason to move on from a productive receiver still on a rookie contract. Although that may be an immediate obstacle for any team inquiring about a trade, it was reported Denver entertained a few teams during the 2022 season about trading Jeudy before the trade deadline. A deal was not reached, but it plays into the Patriots’ favor knowing the Broncos were open to the conversation.
Denver also has Courtland Sutton and Tim Patrick on the books for next season, both set to make significantly more than Jeudy is. However, they would also increase the amount of cap space available much more if traded after June 1st than Jeudy.
Note: The Broncos have until May 1st to decide if they will pick up the former first-round pick’s 5th-year option for the 2024 season.
Broncos’ details for trading Jeudy this offseason after 6/1:
2023 Dead Cap: $2,152,359
2024 Dead Cap: $0
2023 Cap savings if Jeudy is traded: $2,681,769
Cap space available for 2023: $9,406,724