There is significant speculation that the New England Patriots could make a big trade up in the NFL Draft, with their eyes set on a quarterback. ESPN’s Dianna Russini believes that a deal may involved one of the team’s current stars.
There’s very little clarity around where Mac Jones, Trey Lance, and Justin Fields will end up, though all are expected to be in play as top 10 picks. The Patriots have been connected to all three at points during this NFL Draft process.
There are other teams who could also look to move up for a quarterback though, so it may get pretty competitive. Over the last year, there’s been plenty of speculation about cornerback Stephon Gilmore, the 2019 AFC Defensive Player of the Year, potentially being on the move from New England. Russini thinks he could be a key in getting the Patriots into the top 10 to find their quarterback of the future.
“Stephon Gilmore is in his final year of a five-year contract with the New England Patriots. He’s making about $7 million this season. The New England Patriots could perhaps deal Stephon Gilmore in a package to move up, if they are in the business of getting a quarterback,” Russini said on Get Up this morning.
.@diannaESPN thinks the Patriots could deal Stephon Gilmore in order to move into the top 10 of the NFL draft.
"I did speak to a team in the top 10 who told me that they've had calls with New England." pic.twitter.com/ZceNEyGtnn
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) April 27, 2021
“I did speak to a team in the top 10 who told me they had calls with New England,” she revealed. Bill Belichick hasn’t historically been a big fan of trading up, but he also had a legendary quarterback penciled in to the QB1 job for almost 20 years, so the game has changed.
The Patriots are currently set to pick 15th, which may be too low to get any of the top five passers in this year’s draft. There’s plenty of speculation that teams beyond the top three, who are all expected to go with quarterbacks, like the Atlanta Falcons at No. 4 and Carolina Panthers at No. 8, could make moves at the position, even with Matt Ryan entrenched in Atlanta, and Carolina’s recent trade for Sam Darnold.
Thursday could be a wild one. We can’t wait.