This Halloween marks the NFL trade deadline, and the Patriots may have spooked many observers by dealing backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo to San Francisco Monday night for nothing more, reportedly, than a 2018 2nd-round draft pick.
That news, of course, produced a torrent of media reaction from coast to coast.
Questions that many are asking including, "Why the Niners, and why now?" Sports Illustrated takes a stab at answering them.
"Is it the best the Patriots could've done? No," the writer explains in part. "But, at the least on the surface it looks like New England simply wanted to keep the chance of a [Tom] Brady/Garoppolo succession alive for as long as it could, and clearly the Patriots didn't want to go into the territory of having to franchise Garoppolo in March."
WEEI.com offers a column trying to make sense of a seemingly lopsided trade of Garoppolo for less than many observers expected New England to receive.
"Trading him for a second-rounder now," the author asserts, "without receiving a player who can help a flawed defense, seems insane, especially since it leaves the Patriots without a backup quarterback."
The 0-8 49ers seems happy with the outcome, as the San Francisco Chronicle points out.
"For now, we will take the trade on face value. The face value is that the 49ers got a steal," a columnist writes, "giving up not much to get a promising young quarterback who went in the second round in the 2014 draft and who performed in an eye-popping way when the Patriots most needed it."
What's Garoppolo's reaction to becoming a 49er? Thrilled, apparently, according to NBC Sports Boston, which cited a source saying Jimmy G "can't get on a plane fast enough" to San Fran.
So, what do the Patriots do now that Brady is currently the only QB on the team's active or practice squad rosters? NESN.com tackles that predicament.
The *Boston Herald *does as well, and includes some comments from Brady, who appeared on a weekly radio interview after the news broke.
"Jimmy's been a great teammate and great friend and he always will be," Brady said.
"I want nothing but the very best for him."
Since the news came down so late Monday night, there's bound to be more reaction throughout this week. We'll monitor it, as well as any other moves the Patriots might make as we approach the trade deadline (4 p.m. today).
In addition, we're waiting word on WR Chris Hogan, who injured his right shoulder against the Chargers a couple days ago and was reportedly scheduled to undergo an MRI test yesterday to determine the severity.
The Patriots might be on a bye this week, but it's turning out to be a busy one for New England already. Stay tuned…