Patriots Slammed for Handling of Blockbuster Trade

Getty Bill Belichick

If you’re of the belief the New England Patriots and more specifically, Bill Belichick should have handled the Stephon Gilmore situation better, you’re not alone.

Things happen, but it is tough to imagine the Patriots parting ways with a still-productive 31-year-old who is two years removed from winning Defensive Player of the Year, and one year off a Pro Bowl season in 2020. Not only did New England trade Gilmore, all they got back for him was a sixth-rounder? That seems like an epic failure and others who cover the team seem to be in a agreement with that concept.

Bill Belichick is Slammed for His Handling of the Stephon Gilmore Deal

Pat Lane of Pat’s Pulpit took issue with the low return for Gilmore’s services in the trade with the Panthers. Lane doesn’t like the Patriots losing Gilmore in general, but he’s especially taken aback by the team only getting a sixth-round pick for the former Defensive Player of the Year. Lane wrote:

It’s hard to fathom how the Patriots ended up here. They saw the writing on the wall for at least a year. They had a reset season in 2020 and are starting a rookie quarterback in 2021. And yet, they refused to move on from a player who was coming off a quad injury and wanted a new contract. New England has no one to blame for this situation other than themselves. The defense has played well without Gilmore, but that isn’t the point. The point is that the organization had a valuable asset, knew it was going to lose value, and just continued to hold onto it anyway. Not having Gilmore makes the team worse, but not getting even close to a good return for him compounds the issue.

Belichick gets a ton of credit for being a football genius, but when it is all said and done, this has to be one of his worst moments as an NFL general manager. There is no way Gilmore should have been dealt for a low pick that isn’t even coming for another two years.

J.C. Jackson Has to Help Belichick Save Face

The only thing that will help people forget about how badly Belichick fouled this situation up is for the team to finish in the postseason, and with J.C. Jackson playing a significant role in the defense’s success.

Jackson has played well through the first four games of the season with 2 interceptions and 4 passes defended. On Sunday, Jackson and the Patriots will try to win their first post-Gilmore game on the road against the Houston Texans. If rookie QB Davis Mills and veteran wide receiver Brandin Cooks smoke Jackson and the Patriots’ secondary, you can bet you’ll hear some mentions of Gilmore’s name.

Call it unfair or misapplied criticism, but Belichick and the Patriots deserve every word of it if Jackson doesn’t turn into the same shutdown corner that Gilmore has been for the past three years.


Read More
Comment Here
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x