The NFL Trade Deadline came without the New England Patriots pulling the trigger on a deal. However, one Patriots veteran might have given the team’s fanbase a few heart palpitations on Tuesday after he dropped a tweet that sounded a lot like a guy who had just been traded.
Veteran left tackle Trent Brown tweeted: “next chapter” just about two hours before the trade deadline hit, and I’m sure there were fans who were immediately taken aback.
Brown’s name was not mentioned in many trade rumors, and the Patriots need offensive tackle depth. Because of that, Brown would be one of the last guys New England should be looking to deal. That lack of depth is probably why one of the most discussed Patriots trade assets, Isaiah Wynn, didn’t get moved.
Brown quickly saw how misleading his tweet could be for fans. About 10 minutes after his initial post, he followed it up with this clarifying tweet and an apology…sort of:
Brown definitely fooled a few fans. Take a look:
While Brown may not be thinking much about the trade deadline on November 1 because he knows his spot is pretty secure, team fans are locked in on such things. The media also watches team-related social media accounts to absorb the latest news.
Should the Patriots Have Made a Deal?
It’s hard to say. Bill Belichick likely still views his team as a squad capable of competing and maybe even contending. Because of that, he will be careful not to sacrifice too much depth.
That’s precisely why Wynn was retained and why a trade sending Brown anywhere would be totally out of the question. Wide receivers Kendrick Bourne and Nelson Agholor were rumored to be available and teams were reportedly calling about them.
However, Belichick elected to hold on to both veteran receivers despite neither of them getting a ton of snaps throughout the season.
Running back Damien Harris has fallen back into the No. 2 slot at running back behind second-year-pro Rhamondre Stevenson. He is in the final year of his contract, and the Patriots could lose him for nothing during the offseason, but they elected not to move him too.
Depth concerns are likely why none of the players were traded, but the additional draft picks the Patriots might have unearthed by dealing their little-used veterans could come back to bite them in the offseason.
What’s Next For the Patriots?
Coming off a bounce-back win over the New York Jets on Sunday, the Patriots will host the in-transit Indianapolis Colts at Foxborough in Week 9. The Colts have benched veteran quarterback Matt Ryan in favor of second-year signal-caller Sam Ehlinger. The Colts selected the 6-foot-3 inch Texas alum in the sixth round of the 2021 NFL Draft, much after the more hyped guys like Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, Trey Lance, Justin Fields, the Patriots’ Mac Jones, or even the Houston Texans’ Davis Mills.
Because of where he was drafted and the Colts’ attempt to win with Carson Wentz in 2021 and Ryan this year, Ehlinger hasn’t had much of an opportunity to show what he can do on the field. He started in the team’s Week 8, 17-16 loss to the Washington Commanders.
While unspectacular, he showed some promise completing 17 of 23 passes for 201 yards with 0 TDs or interceptions. He will be tested by Belichick’s defense, which always seems to give low-experience pocket passers the flux.
Mobile guys like Lamar Jackson, Cam Newton, and Fields have had more success earlier in their careers against Belichick’s defenses. See the latest examples of the Fields and the Bears’ destruction of the Patriots on Monday Night Football in Week 7.
Sunday’s game will also mark a homecoming of sorts for former Patriots cornerback and Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore. The veteran defensive back will start for the Colts and try to make things tough on his former teammates. The Patriots are looking to improve to 5-4 to get back into the divisional race in the AFC East.