Throughout the off-season, there has been plenty of speculation that the New Orleans Saints would trade star wide receiver Brandin Cooks. All of the rumors were proven to be true today, as Cooks was shipped to the New England Patriots along with a fourth-round pick, in exchange Patriots’ first and third round selections in the 2017 NFL Draft.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 11, 2017
New Orleans Saints Trade Brandin Cooks to New England Patriots
At first glance, the trade may seem like something of a surprise, but in light of recent events, is a logical move for both franchises. New Orleans is clearly ready to commit to Michael Thomas as the top target in their potent passing game, Willie Snead will slot in nicely as a more-than capable-number two, and newly-signed speedster Ted Ginn will slot in as a valuable deep threat. For a team that has struggled defensively for several seasons, upgrading the defense is paramount, and for that reason moving Cooks was a logical course of actions. Cooks is coming off back-to-back 1,100-plus yard seasons, and New Orleans is clearly cashing in on the 23-year-old’s value.
Cooks is entering a contract year, although the Patriots can exercise his fifth-year option for the 2018 season. Cooks will join Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Julian Edelman, recent acquisition Dwayne Allen, and many others in a crowded but high-powered Patriots passing attack, and his versatile skill set will make the offense even more effective. Ultimately, as shocking as the deal may seem, the move makes sense and represents a key moment of the 2017 off-season for both franchises.