Call him "Trader Bill," because according to another ESPN report, Bill Belichick and the Patriots have executed their third trade of the week. After acquiring TE Dwayne Allen earlier this week and DE Kony Ealy (reportedly) late Friday afternoon, New England added to its offensive arsenal by giving up a couple of draft picks for Saints WR Brandin Cooks.
This latest move was originally proposed nearly a week ago, according to numerous media reports last weekend, but New Orleans rejected the first offer. At the time, the Patriots were supposedly offering only their first-round choice, but the pot was sweetened, apparently, with the addition of the third-round selection.
Cooks (5-10, 190), at just 23 years of age and entering his fourth season, is a dynamic young receiver coming off consecutive 1,100-yard campaigns for New Orleans. The Saints made Cooks the 20th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, but despite his productivity on the field, the receiver reportedly became disenfranchised with his role in New Orleans' offense.
Belichick has gotten to see Cooks up close on the practice field the past couple of summers when the Patriots and Saints met for joint training camp practices. Cooks stood out in a positive way in those sessions, which may explain why New England seemingly made such an effort to consummate this particular trade.
By adding Cooks, the Patriots would add a powerful new target to an already loaded arsenal of targets for QB Tom Brady.