Regardless of what happens during this weekend's game against the Miami Dolphins, the New England Patriots should be sellers at the NFL Trade Deadline next week. They're 2-5, and while their Week 7 win against the Buffalo Bills was nice, they're still in last place in the AFC East.
Accordingly, Bill Belichick should be looking to dump some veterans in exchange for draft picks over the next weeks. He does have a few players worth holding onto, however, that he should not part ways with.
Here are three Patriots players who shouldn't be for sale at the Oct. 31 trade deadline.
1. Christian Gonzalez
This one goes without saying, but New England shouldn't dump its 2023 first-round draft pick, even if he is hurt.
Gonzalez wasn't just one of the best players on the Patriots before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury in Week 4 -- he was one of the best defenders in the whole NFL. The 21-year-old rookie cornerback was tearing it up over his first 4 games, racking up 17 tackles, 3 passes defended, 1 sack and 1 interception.
Not only was Gonzalez great in coverage, but he was also an electrifying playmaker, which is something New England desperately needs more of on its roster.
It's a bummer that he's out for the rest of the year, but Gonzalez showed real promise before going down and looks like a franchise cornerstone for years to come. Belichick's drafts have been terrible lately, but he nailed this pick and shouldn't give up on it so soon.
Gonzalez gave us a fleeting taste of his potential this season, but it was more than enough to convince us that he's worth building around.