Patriots Rumors: Thoughts and the romance of a Tee Higgins trade

CINCINNATI, OHIO - JANUARY 08: Tee Higgins #85 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs a route in the first quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at Paycor Stadium on January 08, 2023 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - JANUARY 08: Tee Higgins #85 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs a route in the first quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at Paycor Stadium on January 08, 2023 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Oh, come on Cincinnati.  You have a lethal offensive threat in Ja’Marr Chase, a player you’ll need to pay down the road.  So why not trade your second-best wide receiver in Tee Higgins to a team like the New England Patriots?

Well, Patriots fans have certainly fallen in love with that possibility as rumblings started to flutter regarding a possible contract situation brewing in Cincy.  Could that search for a true No. 1 receiver be a trade away in a player who is second fiddle with the Bengals.

A player, mind you, who is entering the final year of his rookie deal who has racked up the numbers to be any team’s No. 1.  With Joe Burrow coming into his own, if it wasn’t for the superb skills of Chase, Higgins would clearly be the dude in the Queen City.

As a shot at a new deal comes to surface, the question is whether Higgins wants to be the dude somewhere else, or can the Bengals pay him enough to stay in a situation where he would be an apart of one of the best wide receiver duos in the NFL.  If the answer is a trade the best option?

light. Related Story. Tee Higgins a great match, but not for No. 14 overall

Obviously, a team like the Bengals want to keep all their offensive firepower, but the player could force his way out and a team like the Patriots would be an ideal opportunity.  Not only would Higgins be the top offensive weapon, but he could also be the dude in New England for years to come.

That is where the romance starts and stops.  First, Higgins and the Bengals would have to come to that point in contract negotiations where a trade is the only option.  Secondly, the Patriots giving Higgins the type of contract he would want is not very Belichick like.

And then there is what Bengals director of player personnel Duke Tobin had to say about the situation.

Patriots and other teams will have to go find their own receiver

Addressing the topic at the NFL Combine press conference on Tuesday, Tobin made the message clear.  The team has no interest in making other teams better by trading away an explosive talent like Higgins.

"“I’m not in the business of making other teams better.  I’m in the business of making the Cincinnati Bengals better,” Tobin said, as transcribed by  “And, so, trading Tee Higgins is not on my mind.“That’s their problem.  They want a receiver, go find your own.  In my opinion, Tee Higgins is a good piece for the Cincinnati Bengals, so the trade stuff is a little ridiculous right now.”"

Why does it feel like he is taking directly to the New England Patriots there?

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While Tobin’s words should make Bengals fans relieved, those are also words uttered with hopes that any contract talks go smoothly.  Of course, the team wants to keep a talent like Higgins, but money does talk and if negotiations go south, a team can send a player walking.

If that happens, would the Patriots be willing to give up the type of trade package it will take to land Higgins?

Thoughts and the romance of Higgins in a Patriots’ uniform

While the probability of Belichick and the Patriots trading for a player like DeAndre Hopkins is more likely, the idea of Higgins as a weapon for Mac Jones is very intriguing.

Coming off a 1,000-yard season as the second option in Cincy, Higgins would give the Patriots that outside wide receiver they have been searching for.  Young, big, athletic, productive, and whatever other adjective you want to throw in, this is the type of player worth trading a first-round pick for.

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The Patriots did it when they traded for Brandin Cooks, and as Higgins better and bigger talent than Cooks was at that time, that No. 14 pick is not off limits if the coach and the team believe the player is a fit.

We’ll put this romance to rest right now, but if things start to get tumultuous, the passion surrounding this trade rumor will resurface.