The New England Patriots now own two first-round picks in the 2018 NFL Draft as of Tuesday evening after trading wide receiver Brandin Cooks to the Los Angeles Rams.
The Patriots traded Cooks, along with a fourth-round pick, to the Rams in exchange for their first-round pick in this year’s draft, the 23rd overall selection, and their sixth-round pick. It now makes you wonder if the Patriots now have their sights set on moving up even further in the first-round to potentially draft a quarterback, which could ultimately be the heir apparent to Tom Brady.
As a result of Tuesday’s trade, the Patriots now own two selections in each of the first two-rounds of the 2018 NFL Draft in addition to a third-round selection, two sixth-round selections and a seventh-round selection.
As for Cooks being dealt to the Rams, he is now in the final-year of his current contract after the Patriots picked up his fifth-round option a year ago following them acquiring him in a March 2017 trade with the New Orleans Saints. Cooks is scheduled to earn $8.459 million in 2018 and the Patriots trading him Tuesday now frees up some salary cap space for them this season.
In his one season with the Patriots, Cooks caught 65 passes for 1,082 yards and 7 touchdowns. He figures to be a solid addition to the Rams, who let wide receiver Sammy Watkins sign with the Kansas City Chiefs earlier this offseason. The Rams had previously been rumored to possibly wanting to trade for New York York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. the last few weeks.
With Cooks now out of the picture the Patriots wide receiver depth chart now includes Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Malcolm Mitchell, Kenny Britt, Cordarrelle Patterson, Phillip Dorsett, Matthew Slater, Cody Hollister, and Riley McCarron. In short, it will be surprising should the Patriots ultimately spend a first-round selection on another wide receiver this year.
The Patriots might be in the market to draft another quarterback in the early rounds this year after trading Brady’s former backup, Jimmy Garoppolo, to the San Francisco 49ers last season. Currently, veteran journeyman quarterback Brian Hoyer is Brady’s backup.