Bill Belichick Shoots Down Trade Rumors for Key Defender

Despite a rough season, the Patriots' defender seems set to stay in New England. Head coach Bill Belichick believes he's a player to build around, hinting at a possible extension or re-signing.
Bill Belichick has shot down a trade rumor regarding one of the Patriots' best defenders.
Bill Belichick has shot down a trade rumor regarding one of the Patriots' best defenders. / Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Now at 2-6 and still mired in last place in the AFC East after Sunday's 31-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins, the New England Patriots should be obvious sellers at the NFL Trade Deadline on Tuesday. The team has too many injuries and roster deficiencies to overcome, so it's time to start trading off veterans and begin rebuilding for next year.

While several Patriots could be moved before Tuesday's deadline, head coach and GM Bill Belichick seemed to clarify the status of at least one possible trade candidate on Monday morning.

Patriots Trade Rumors: Kyle Dugger Off the Market?

When asked about the future of safety Kyle Dugger during an interview on Monday morning, Belichick confirmed that he would like to keep Dugger in New England, seemingly implying that Dugger is not for sale right now.

That could also mean that Belichick is considering extending or re-signing Dugger, who is going to be a free agent at season's end. Belichick has always shown a preference towards defensive players as a former defensive coordinator himself, so it's not surprising that he'd want to keep Dugger around.

The 27-year-old former second-round pick has been one of the few bright spots for the Patriots this season, especially on Sunday. He notched his first sack and interception of the season while also racking up 9 tackles. He's now up to 57 tackles on the season, including 5 for a loss (tied for his career-high).

Dugger's efforts have not gone unnoticed by Belichick, especially in what is shaping up to be a lost season. Belichick apparently believes Dugger is a player to build around and can anchor the defense for a few more years.

So while New England's roster may look a bit different in a few days, Dugger seems like a good bet to still be on it.

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