The New England Patriots have already pulled off one noteworthy trade this season, dealing All-Pro cornerback Stephon Gilmore to the Carolina Panthers. Do they have another coming ahead of the NFL’s November 2 trade deadline?
With the trade scuttlebutt on the tips of many NFL fans’ tongues, the Patriots have been a topic of discussion for a number of league analysts.
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ESPN Analyst Suggests Patriots Trade N’Keal Harry to Jags
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell cooked up a series of NFL Trade Deadline proposals. One of them involves the Patriots’ N’Keal Harry. Barnwell likes the thought of the Patriots swapping Harry for the Jacksonville Jaguars’ K’Lavon Chaisson. Here is Barnwell’s rationale:
Let’s swap two disappointing first-round picks to places in which they might be able to thrive. Harry never seemed to settle in during his time in New England, and after failing to impress with Cam Newton in 2020, free-agent signings pushed him out of the rotation. The No. 32 overall pick in the 2019 draft only has two catches this season, but his 6-foot-4 frame could be valuable for a Jaguars team that doesn’t have a physical wideout with DJ Chark out for the season.
Chaisson was drafted by the now-deposed Dave Caldwell regime in Jacksonville, and while he entered the league as an exciting prospect and possible Anthony Barr clone, he has done little with the Jags. The No. 20 overall pick in the 2020 draft played about half of the defensive snaps last season, and despite moving into Year 2 for a defense that isn’t exactly filled with superstars, he has gotten similar playing time.
Bill Belichick has a track record of trading for struggling high draft picks on defense and getting the most out of them; Chaisson would be the next in line.
I’m not sure the Jacksonville Jaguars or any team will be able to get something out of Harry. That said, the Jaguars might be a strong landing spot for Harry.
The Jacksonville market is one of the smallest in the league. The team has also only had one winning season since 2017. Rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence is still trying to get adjusted to the NFL.
A player like Harry could provide the red-zone threat and physical receiver that allows him to win against single coverage down the stretch of the season.
Can Chaisson Help the Patriots?
Chaisson is still just 23 years old. While he’s already had as many starts in 2021 as he did throughout his rookie season (three), Chaisson has still not made the sort of impact on defense the Jaguars were expecting when they drafted him with the 20th overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft.
Chaisson is an athletic linebacker who could instantly upgrade the Patriots’ speed on the second level of their defense. If he’s grouped with guys like Raekwon McMillan, Cameron McGrone, Josh Uche and Anfernee Jennings, the Patriots might go from a slower group of linebackers to one of the more athletic in the NFL.
If the Jaguars are willing to pull the trigger on this swap, the Patriots would be foolish to hesitate.
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