Patriots offered draft pick for Saints WR Brandin Cooks

Alyssa BaileyMar 06, 2017

NOLA.com's Josh Katzenstein reports that the New England Patriots offered the New Orleans Saints a first-round pick in a trade attempt for Cooks.

New England offered New Orleans the 32nd overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, but the offer was rejected. The pick swap wasn't enough to entice the Saints since they're still looking for a swap-free first round pick or a defensive player in return. They've been shopping Brandin Cooks, a former first-round pick and back-to-back 1,000-yard receiver.

Cooks has been the subject of trade talks this week at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis as the Saints look to improve their defense, with the Tennessee Titans and Philadelphia Eagles among his suitors, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen.

In fact, Payton had no problem praising Cooks, saying "he's everything we were wanting when we drafted him".

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Cooks led New Orleans in receiving yardage in 2016 but was second to rookie Michael Thomas in both catches and touchdowns.

"But we are always listening", said Payton. That would be a bargain price, but here's the problem: Cooks is seeking a long-term extension that would make him one of the highest-paid receivers, according to the NFL Network. Cooks' agents also represent Marcus Mariota and Carson Wentz, who are the quarterbacks of the two aforementioned teams. Snead had 72 catches for 895 yards and four TDs as the No. 3 receiver.

If the Eagles were to trade for Cooks, he would count for $1,563,198 on their salary cap in 2017.

Cooks finished the 2016 season playing 16 games, and 78 receptions for 1,173 yards and eight touchdown receptions. He's a career backup, and he's never thrown for more than 248 yards in a season.

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New Orleans ranked first in the National Football League in total offense and second in scoring in 2016 but finished 7-9 and missed the playoffs for the third consecutive year. He does have a fifth-year option for 2018, but reports suggest he's looking to be paid like a top receiver, which makes the Patriots' interest a bit unorthodox. Until the roster is complete, the Patriots will keep making calls to teams with #1 receivers to see if they are on the market. If Jon Robinson feels forced to take a receiver with one of his two first round picks, it greatly limits his options on draft day.

So why would the New Orleans Saints trade Brandin Cooks? They hold picks No. 14 and 18, respectively, in round one.

"I think by the time next Tuesday rolls around, there's a pretty good chance that Brandin Cooks is going to be moved".

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