There is always a ton of talk going on about available wide receivers for the New England Patriots. The big names always dominate the conversation, but Patriots cap expert Miguel Bezan offered what he believes is a more ‘plausible’ trade target for New England.
Follow the Heavy on Patriots Facebook page for the latest breaking news, rumors, and content!
What About the Houston Texans’ Will Fuller V?
Bezan’s projections are often on point because he’s always cognizant of the financial components, and he also knows the Patriots roster and history as well as anyone.
Because of that, even if I wasn’t familiar with Fuller, I’d give some thought to the suggestion. However, there’s no blind faith needed here. Fuller’s game-breaking over-the-top speed is exactly the kind of weapon Cam Newton and the Patriots need for their offense. Coming into the NFL out of Notre Dame back in 2016, Fuller ran a 4.33 40-yard dash.
As of now, the closest thing to a deep threat that the Patriots have on their roster is Damiere Byrd. He’s had a few moments this season, but he has yet to demonstrate the ability to gain separation deep and to force defenses to commit a deep safety to provide help on the home rum ball.
Fuller has this ability. He’s in the midst of what’s pacing to be the best season of his career. Through five games, Fuller already has 22 receptions for 332 yards and three touchdowns. That has him on pace for 70 receptions, 1,062 yards, and just under 10 TDs. All three totals would be a career-high for him.
The Money and Situation Make Tons of Sense
Fuller is in the final season of a four-year contract. He’ll make $10.1 million this year, and the seemingly rebuilding Texans might like the idea of dumping what’s left of his deal while adding a Day 3 draft pick in the process.
The fact that Fuller isn’t under contract for next season might be attractive to the Patriots who probably wouldn’t want to be on the hook for another year without an understanding of the fit.
From a cap room standpoint, with a little over $23.1 million available, the Patriots have more than enough room to take on Fuller’s deal. Imagine a three-receiver set with Fuller, N’Keal Harry, and Julian Edelman on the field. That’s the kind of dynamic attack that when paired with the Patriots’ dominant run game and still elite defense could make some noise this season and in the playoffs.
Color this nothing more than educated speculation at this point, but if there is a moderate splash with a bigger impact than it appears available to the Patriots, it’s a deal for a guy like Fuller who might break defenses without breaking the bank.