As CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reported last week, the Patriots, Eagles and Seahawks are expected to be three of most aggressive teams at an NFL deadline that is expected to be the most frenzied of all time.
The Eagles would love to pry defensive end Von Miller from the Broncos, as help along the defensive line is a much greater need, but if the market is soft on Sanders expect Howie Roseman to pounce. The Eagles got Golden Tate last season with a third round pick. As of now, teams around the league don’t seem to be willing to trade more than a fourth rounder for the 32-year-old Sanders but that could change as we inch closer to the Oct. 29 trade deadline.
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The Patriots, meanwhile, have been rumored to be interested in every receiver under the sun (AJ Green, Stefon Diggs, Mohamed Sanu). New England has made a habit out of making in-season trades over the years – and even made a deal for a receiver last season when they dealt a fifth rounder to Cleveland for Josh Gordon.
It looks like a given that the Pats will make some sort of move to address their receiver woes as they freed up $2 million in cap space this week by releasing tight end Ben Watson.
Despite their rivalry with one another over the years, the Patriots and Broncos have made many deals over the years – most recently involving cornerback Duke Dawson and tight end AJ Derby.
For what it’s worth, ESPN’s Bill Barnwell recently wrote that Sanders to the Patriots makes the most sense – though it likely won’t happen until the immediate days before the deadline.
The Seahawks are another contender that could look to bring in Sanders. The Seahawks were initially looking hard at signing Antonio Brown when he became available, and they have been active around the deadline before (Duane Brown trade in 2017). Seattle also has more cap flexibility at the moment than a team like the Patriots as they have around $10 million to play with.
As for what Sanders could bring any of these teams on the field – just know that he is far from washed up. He has three games this season with over 86 yards receiving and is still getting treated as a number one receiver by opposing defenses. If he wound up with a better quarterback situation (Carson Wentz, Tom Brady and Russell Wilson certainly fit the bill), we could again see him emerge as a 1,000-yard level WR.