The NFL’s 2022 trade deadline came and went without the New England Patriots making any moves: while an NFL record 10 moves were made on Tuesday, Bill Belichick and company did not dip their toe into the trade waters. As a result, the basic foundation of the Patriots’ roster will stay intact heading into the second half of the season.
However, the moves — or the lack thereof — do not equally impact all players on the team. With that in mind, let’s do a quick rundown of those who can be seen as benefactors of the trade deadline and those who can not.
Winners: WR Nelson Agholor, WR Kendrick Bourne, OT Isaiah Wynn, RB Damien Harris: The Patriots reportedly received calls on at least seven of their players, but only these four were identified as realistic trade candidates. All remain on New England’s roster past the deadline, though, meaning that the team has shown at least some level of confidence in them — at least enough to see any potential offers as not worth giving them up for.
Winner: QB Mac Jones. All of the players mentioned above are on the offensive side of the ball, and moving on from any them would have weakened the supporting cast around Mac Jones. That did not happen, though, meaning that the sophomore quarterback still has a deep wide receiver and running back group to work with as well as an experienced albeit inconsistent offensive lineman.
Winners: LB Jahlani Tavai, LB Mack Wilson Sr., LB Raekwon McMillan. The Patriots’ off-the-ball linebacker group has been up and down so far this season, and the team bolstering it through trade was not entirely outside of the realm of possibility. However, no such move was made — which is good news especially for the three rotational options alongside Ja’Whaun Bentley.
Winner: ST Raleigh Webb. The Patriots signed Webb off the Baltimore practice squad after losing Cody Davis, and he saw action in two games since his arrival. Apparently, the team liked what it saw from the rookie given that it did not bolster its special teams unit through trade.
Loser.: OT Yodny Cajuste. Isaiah Wynn staying put is good news for New England’s offensive tackle depth, but not necessarily for one of the group’s members. Yodny Cajuste would have climbed up the depth chart had Wynn been sent away, but with him staying put still projects as OT4; Wynn and Marcus Cannon are ahead of him on the right side with Trent Brown on the left. Speaking of whom...
Loser: OT Trent Brown. Brown has already faced the toughest slate of any offensive tackles in the NFL so far, and it will not get any easier: the Miami Dolphins acquired Bradley Chubb via trade on Tuesday, adding a bona fide pass rusher to their already impressive arsenal. The expectation is that Chubb will primarily go up against Brown in Week 17 — a tough matchup for the veteran left tackle.
Loser: RB Kevin Harris. As noted above, the Patriots held onto Damien Harris through the trade deadline. This means that the other Harris in the running back room will continue to play only a marginal role moving forward: with Damien staying put, Kevin is expected to be little more than an emergency option going forward.