Patriots trade Brandin Cooks to Rams for 1st-round pick

A great thought about the Patriots came from Scott Bischoff (Lions writer for The Athletic and National Scout for NDT Scouting) on his Twitter account. Bill Belichick now has four picks in the first two rounds, and five selections in the first 95 picks. With two first-round picks (No. 23 and No. 31), the Patriots have what it takes to get in the Beckham Jr. conversation right now. This makes it more likely that one of those picks in the first three rounds will see a receiver heading to New England. Here's everything we think we can think about the deal.

With Cooks gone, the Patriots have a hole at receiver. They essentially rented him for a year when his salary was $1.5 million and then traded him for a better haul before his salary spiked to $8.5 million. Los Angeles, in addition to Cooks, will receive a fourth-round pick from New England.

The #BrandinCooksSmearCampaign has already begun...

The Patriots now have the #23 overall pick, #31 overall pick, #43 overall pick and #63 overall pick. The 24-year-old played 92.7 percent of the Patriots' offensive snap in the regular season and his blistering speed will be sorely missed, but New England have plenty of options in the wide receiver role. They could also sign a linebacker in free agency. They tend to get dollar-on-the-dime production from pass-catchers who often include several running backs.

Those three days at the end of April just got a lot more interesting for the Patriots. This trade would seemingly all but rule out dealing Gronkowski because the Patriots couldn't afford to lose another key weapon this offseason.

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If anyone thought the Rams were done adding star players, think again.

Will the Patriots trade for Odell Beckham?

Given that they also have to pay the likes of Aaron Donald, Todd Gurley, and others in the coming years, acquiring Beckham was going to be even more costly. This offseason, team owner Robert Kraft said that the Patriots need to look for a quarterback in the draft, and with Brady turning 41 in August, they may need to put that plan into action.

Why did the Patriots make this trade?

For now, they don't have that insurance heading into the 2018 season.

Edelman will return to his status as the Pats' No. 1 wideout in 2018, while Chris Hogan, Phillip Dorsett, Kenny Britt, Cordarrelle Patterson and Malcolm Mitchell will serve in supporting roles.

  • Regina Holmes