Patriots 'Open' to Trading No. 3 Pick; Insider Names 2 Potential Partners

If the New England Patriots decide to target a veteran quarterback in free agency, they could become a trade partner for teams looking to move up the board.

For all the talk and hints from coach Jerod Mayo surrounding the New England Patriots' No. 3 overall pick in the NFL Draft, could they end up trading it away? 

Everything is still on the table, as the draft is still weeks away. Yet, the latest report from ESPN's Dan Graziano states that the recent buzz regarding New England's No. 3 pick suggests they could be a likely trade partner for teams looking to move up the draft board.

"The Patriots also need a quarterback, but there are people around the league who believe they are open to trading the No. 3 selection, moving back in the draft, and addressing the quarterback position in free agency," Graziano writes. "If the Pats do trade that pick ... the two teams I'd keep an eye on are the Falcons (moving from the No. 8 spot) and the Vikings (moving from the No. 11 spot, assuming they don't bring back Cousins)."

Jan 17, 2024; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo (left) and owner Robert Kraft pose for photos after a press conference announcing Mayo's hiring as the team's head coach at Gillette Stadium. 

Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

As the ESPN insider noted, based on recent mock drafts, it is projected that either UNC's Drake Maye or LSU's Jayden Daniels could be available by the time New England is on the clock, as USC's Caleb Williams is the near consensus projected No. 1 pick. 

While the Patriots undoubtedly need to find their next franchise quarterback this offseason, as neither Mac Jones nor Bailey Zappe proved to be long-term solutions this past season, a trade down the board would suggest they'd look to free agency. 

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Both the Falcons and Vikings would likely be trading up to take a quarterback, which, depending on who is taken by the Chicago Bears and Washington Commanders, could see three signal-callers go off the board with the top three picks. 

If the plan is for the Patriots to sign a veteran play-caller in free agency, a trade with the Vikings would be interesting, considering the expiring contract of Cousins, who could very well be a target for New England. 

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