Throughout much of the early pre-draft process the only buzz out there were rumors about potential trades involving New England QB Jimmy Garoppolo and CB Malcolm Butler. Cleveland was reportedly interested in acquiring Garoppolo and were believed to be considering parting with the 12th pick in this year’s draft as part of the compensation, but weren’t willing to include the #1 pick overall. Meanwhile, Butler, a restricted free agent, met with New Orleans, but the Saints weren’t willing to offer him a contract because they’d have to give the Patriots their top pick in this month’s draft, the 11th overall, rather than the 32nd pick which the Saints acquired from the Patriots earlier this year for WB Brandin Cooks. Those deals, though, kind of slipped to the backburner several weeks ago, but it appears that they may be back on the table.
New England director of player personnel Nick Caserio, for example, left the door open to a possible trade when asked about Garoppolo’s status at a pre-draft presser. According to Caserio, “anything that we do, we’re always going to do what we think is in the best interest of our football team, and that’s how we approach it. That’s not going to change. Whatever you think is best for our team for 2017, for that season, then that’s what we’ll do. However that manifests itself, not exactly sure, but that’s where the focus is, is trying to put together the best team possible for the 2017 season. However that comes about, then we’ll take it as it comes.” That’s word salad for anything is possible. Meanwhile, a possible trade for Butler came closer to fruition after he signed his first-round tender earlier today. Now that he is back on the Patriots roster they can discuss trade possibilities with other teams that they could not do as long as he was a RFA. Stay tuned.