Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Mankins/Wright Trade

Mankins/Wright Trade Write-Up
It seems like every year the New England Patriots make a head-scratching transaction around this time. I’m not, however, referring to their respectful, early release of veteran players in the hopes that they still have time to catch on elsewhere. I am referring, of course, to their buzz-worthy trades that make fantasy football players totally reevaluate their draft boards.  Most fans would see the Logan Mankins for Tim Wright and (as Adam Schefter reported, a 4th-Round Draft selection) trade as a “giant” steal for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers- giant pun totally intended.

I mean, come on, Logan Mankins has been a six-time Pro-Bowler for the Patriots, and has only missed 14 games in nine seasons with New England.  He is an absolute beast on the field, having bolstered the blind side of Tom Brady’s for the past nine seasons. 

But maybe we are looking at this trade the wrong way.  After all, Bill Belichick is a genius.  We have seen him part ways with other veterans on the wrong side of 30 (think Lawyer Milloy, Mike Vrabel, Richard Seymour, etc.). 

And don’t forget, the Patriots lack of tight end depth is well documented.  Tim Wright is 24 and has shown signs of real talent.  

With a new OL Coach this year, the New England Patriots have moved on from Dante Scarnecchia and on to Dave DeGuglielmo (after spending the last 13 years with Scarnecchia there). 

When most fans trust Belichick to zig, he zags, sending his most dependable guard to the NFC.  Mankins’ career has been incredible since being selected in the first round by the Patriots in 2005.  One story that will always resonate was the 2011 season he spent on a torn ACL (he played that season at LG, LT, and I believe even some RG). 

When all is set and done, Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots will have another young weapon to feed into their always-evolving offense.  They haven’t used the 2-TE set since Aaron Hernandez departed and their 2-RB sets haven’t had the same intimidation factor that BB hoped for (though once Stevan Ridley is out of the picture, maybe James White will step up).   

In addition, Logan Mankins was set to make $10.5M in 2014, $11M in 2015, and $7M in 2016 before becoming a RFA in 2017.  Tim Wright, however, is making the league minimum in his second year in the league.

Wonder what this frees up for the 2014 New England Patriots and notorious hustler Bill Belichick?  This newly free money will be used for contract extensions for Devin McCourty, Shane Vereen, and most importantly Darrelle Revis. 

The obvious beneficiary out of this deal is Tampa Bay Buccaneer running back Doug Martin.  Though he gets a slight bump in the ratings, I still wouldn’t pay a second-round price tag for him, go for a guy with a higher floor.  Wait for him to drop ‘til the third round and snag him then.

Written by Daniel Krane follow on TWITTER

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