Pats deal WR Cooks to Rams

The Patriots didn't want to be left out of the offseason trade party, so they chose to send wide receiver Brandin Cooks to the Rams for Los Angeles's first-round pick, No. 23 overall.

In exchange, the Patriots received the Rams' first-round and sixth-round picks and while the deal makes sense for both franchises, the reasons behind the trade are likely to be heavily scrutinized, particularly in New England. 23, 31, 43, and 63 overall - or they could package a pair together in a trade to move up the draft board. Cooks is ultimately an upgrade on Watkins. Later it was indicated that the Pats had traded their wide receiver, Brandin Cooks.

The Rams got their playmaking wide receiver to become a Super Bowl contender.

Don't expect OBJ: Some of the immediate reaction on Twitter was speculation the Patriots would pursue Giants receiver Odell Beckham a trade now that the Rams - who had discussed the possibility - were out of the mix and the Patriots had assets to do it. The 6th round pick the Patriots could receive in return could be the 176, 183, 194, 195, or the 198th overall pick. Time will tell if it's enough to outbid the 49ers (No. 9 overall pick), but New England has enough to pique New York's interest.

Besides being one of the best receivers in the league, Cooks is also one of the most durable.

In one season with New England, Cooks hauled in 65 catches for 1,082 yards and seven touchdowns.

With the Rams no longer having a first-round pick in this year's draft to offer the Giants, they're out of the Beckham sweepstakes.

Bill Belichick now has two first- and second-round picks in the upcoming draft after trading Brandin Cooks to the Rams on Tuesday.

Add in the Rams' No. 23 overall pick and New England is cooking with gas on draft day. With the reigning NFC West champions trying to fill a need and continuing to be aggressive in the trade market to assemble a win-now roster, the Patriots likely saw an opportunity to extract maximum value for Cooks.

The wide receiver depth chart looks a little different.

Cooks is in the last year of his rookie contract, as the Patriots picked up his fifth-year option in April of last year.

If a team trades for Beckham, they're also going to have the cap space needed to sign him to a long-term deal.

Cooks will play a similar role to Watkins, stretching the field vertically to free up the likes of Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and Todd Gurley.

  • Stacy Allen