The New England Patriots have never shied away from making a move at the NFL trade deadline, and there are no indications that this year might be different. If Bill Belichick and company do indeed swing a trade, Pro Football Focus has identified one player who could be sent elsewhere: interior offensive lineman Ted Karras.
Listing 12 potential AFC trades ahead of the 2021 NFL trade deadline, PFF’s Brad Spielberger suggests that New England send the veteran to the Cincinnati Bengals:
C TED KARRAS, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
Hypothetical Trade: Ted Karras → Cincinnati Bengals for a 2022 seventh-round pick
Dead money: $1,000,000
Cap savings: $833,333
Contract with acquiring team: One year, $833,333
Karras ending up in New England this season after a stint with the Miami Dolphins was a strange circumstance, with New England Patriots incumbent starting center David Andrews also being a free agent. The belief in league circles was that one of Andrews or Karras would sign with the Miami Dolphins and Brian Flores. Instead, both landed in New England.
Although it comes on a small sample size, Karras has the eighth-best pass-blocking grade among interior offensive linemen through Week 5 — an 81.3 grade on 57 pass-blocking snaps — after splitting time at left and right guard.
Frankly, Karras is too good to not be starting somewhere. ...
Serving as the top backup along the interior offensive line after his free agency return, Karras has seen extensive action the last three games — including two as the starting right guard. While his role is up in the air with Isaiah Wynn, Michael Onwenu and Shaq Mason all back at practice again, moving him for a seventh-round selection would probably not be in the Patriots’ best interest.
Karras, after all, has proven himself a valuable member of an offensive line that saw its depth tested at various points this season. While, yes, New England could create $833,333 in cap savings, an argument can be made that keeping the 28-year-old is better business.