5 receivers Patriots could trade for ranked by likelihood

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#1. Tee Higgins

By far, the trade with the most potential to come to fruition is the Patriots acquiring Tee Higgins after the Bengals franchise tagged him this offseason. Because they decided to tag him instead of get an extension done, Higgins has since requested a trade, which Cincinnati has decided will not happen.

But this is a common occurrence in the NFL, and things change so quickly that it doesn't mean much for the Bengals to claim that he's not available for trade. Multiple insiders have reported that contract negotiations have stalled if they have even taken place, which is the foundation of Higgins' frustration.

Since Tee Higgins made his desire to be traded public, the lack of updates on any progress in extension talks is a clear sign that they may not be going well. This uncertainty leaves the door wide open for the Patriots to potentially make a significant offer and secure the deal.

Because they were unable to convince Calvin Ridley, their primary free agent target this offseason, to sign with them, going after a player like Higgins makes all the sense in the world. At just 25 years old, he's a proven talent and was initially selected to be the Bengals' number-one wideout until they drafted Ja'Marr Chase a year later.

Despite being put in the backseat for the younger receiver, Higgins has remained a solid offensive weapon for Joe Burrow. If traded to New England, he could quickly revert to his days as a WR1.

The Patriots are well-equipped to take on a guy like Higgins, who is playing on a franchise tag and wants a long-term contract. Because they didn't go on a spending spree this offseason, the Patriots have plenty of money left in the bank this year, with a projected $207+ million available in 2025 to ensure he gets the deal he deserves.

Although news has been slow regarding the Bengals' efforts to retain Higgins for years to come, if talks continue to go nowhere, there's no reason to believe they won't want to deal him when he's most valuable and they can benefit from the return. The Patriots could offer several picks, potentially second/third rounders and more.

So why would the Bengals turn that down?

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