For the third year in a row, Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots stood pat at the NFL Trade Deadline. Given the team's 2-6 record and slew of trade candidates, it was certainly a puzzling strategy by Belichick.
His inaction was even more baffling given the trade interest around defensive end Josh Uche, who was reportedly targeted by a pair of NFC teams leading up to Tuesday's deadline.
Josh Uche Trade Rumors
According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, the Seattle Seahawks "looked heavily" into Uche before signing Frank Clark instead. The New Orleans Saints also showed interested, but nothing came of it.
Knowing that Uche had multiple suitors and Belichick still didn't strike a deal makes his inactivity even more frustrating. Uche is going to be a free agent at season's end, so this was the Patriots' last chance to get something in return for him before he potentially leaves.
And with New England's playoff chances essentially cooked, he's not going to be of much value to the 2023 squad.
Uche was one of the Patriots' top defenders last year, racking up 11.5 sacks and 14 QB hits in 15 games. He hasn't been as productive this year, but still has 2.0 sacks and 3 QB hits through six games so far.
Some have theorized that Belichick didn't trade Uche (or anyone else) because he didn't feel that he was getting enough in return. Belichick was reportedly looking for at least a third-round pick in trade discussions. Given the Washington Commanders only fetched a third-round pick for Chase Young (a superior player), however, that was probably never on the table for Uche.
Regardless, it would have been nice to get at least something for Uche, but instead the Patriots settled for nothing.
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