Report: Patriots have inquired about 'every' QB trade target originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
If you're an NFL general manager even thinking about trading your quarterback, chances are you've heard from Bill Belichick this offseason.
That's according to The Athletic's Jeff Howe, who reported Monday that the New England Patriots "have had conversations regarding every potential trade target in the league" at the QB position.
"If a quarterback has been perceived to be available, the Patriots have picked up the phone," Howe wrote.
New England discussed trading for both Matthew Stafford and Carson Wentz, per Howe, but weren't "serious contenders" because they weren't willing to meet either asking price. (Stafford went for two first-round picks, a third round pick and Jared Goff, while Wentz went for a third-round pick and a second-rounder that could become a first.)
But the Patriots are still in the mix for trade targets Deshaun Watson, Jimmy Garoppolo, Marcus Mariota and Sam Darnold, and Howe notes that Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan, Teddy Bridgewater, Gardner Minshew and Nick Foles could become available, as well.
Simply put, New England is considering literally every quarterback option for 2021 -- including signing a veteran free agent or even bringing back Cam Newton, which Howe reports the Patriots "haven't ruled out."
The question will be what Belichick and his staff are willing to pay for a QB. New England has more than $60 million in cap space this offseason but also has several other holes on its roster. So, should the Patriots target a talented QB with a big cap hit but have less money remaining to surround him with weapons, or look to add a signal-caller on a bargain so they have more money to spend on his supporting cast?
According to Howe, New England is trying to thread the needle by being "diligent" and waiting for quarterback prices to drop. But the Patriots also have incentive to bring in a quarterback early in the free-agent process, so it will be interesting to see if they budge in the coming weeks and pull the trigger.