Let's try this hypothetical Deshaun Watson-to-Patriots trade instead

Let's try this hypothetical Deshaun Watson-to-Patriots trade instead

Deshaun Watson to the Patriots.

It's a hot ... well, not even a rumor because a rumor means it came from something or someone, and it hasn't. It's a hot ... well, we're talking about it. 

And by all means, let's talk, baby.

None of us in this line of work are nearly as busy as we typically are. I've legitimately already written one column about Watson to the Patriots. Something about a non-Vegas casino giving him odds to be the Patriots starter in 2021? Good enough for me. Let's party. 

CBS Sports did a post on what it might take for this all to go down. Watson, is, after all, under the Texans' control for another year, then a fifth-year option, then a possible franchise tag.

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Here's the trade that CBS Sports laid out: 

  • Patriots receive: QB Deshaun Watson, 2021 sixth-round pick
  • Texans receive: 2020 first-round pick, 2021 first-round pick, 2021 third-round pick, 2021 fourth-round pick, 2022 second-round pick, OG Joe Thuney

I'd do this trade, but whoops! They rushed it!

The conversation around the Patriots trading for Watson is based on next offseason, not this offseason, for a couple reasons. First off, people will lose their minds in Houston if the Texans trade both DeAndre Hopkins and Deshaun Watson in the same offseason. 

Secondly, if the Pats have their eye on Watson, their move should be to play out next season with Jarrett Stidham and see what they have at quarterback before deciding to pay an arm and a leg for a superstar. 

So let's adjust the timing and come up with our own hypothetical. 

CBS Sports got it right with the two first-round pick part (good job, 'preciate you, etc.). Look at trades involving good young quarterbacks — eh, the one the Patriots didn't make, anyway — and high picks are a-flyin'. 

When the Broncos traded Jay Cutler to the Bears after his third season, they got back two firsts and then some. Hell, Carson Palmer was 32 when the Raiders traded for him, and they gave up a first and a conditional pick that could have become another first (it became a second). 

So a 25-year-old (which is what he'll be next offseason) Watson? Yeah, he's costing two firsts easily. Let's say 2021 — which might be a decent pick if the team struggles in Year 1 without Brady — and 2022. 

We can't throw Thuney into the deal because he's currently on the franchise tag and we don't know if the Patriots will have him. Instead, how about a worse player at a position that doesn't matter as much, but for all we know will interest the Texans because they just showed they're dumb enough to trade a good player for David Johnson?

Here's Sony Michel!

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The "logic" here is that Johnson still being good is a tossup, and Michel is young and will have two more years on his rookie deal. Plus, he's a first-round pick so it will make the package look shiny enough. 

Let's fill it out with third-round picks in 2021 and 2022, a second-round pick in 2023 and Stidham, bringing the package to...

  • Patriots receive: QB Deshaun Watson (and the right to pay him a gajillion dollars)
  • Texans receive: First-round pick in 2021, third-round pick in 2021, first-round pick in 2022, third-round pick in 2022, second-round pick in 2023, QB Jarrett Stidham, RB Sony Michel 

Steep as hell, right? Well, that's what it should cost to get one of the best players in the league as he's entering his prime.

And just another reminder: The only logic as to why the Texans would trade Deshaun Watson is because they're dumb or Watson hates them. If they are using their brains at all, they do everything they can to keep him. 

Don't like the trade? I'd like to now invite ESPN to keep the train rolling and come up with a response to my hypothetical trade, which was a response to CBS Sports' hypothetical trade.

I am so, so bored. 

Benjamin Watson: 'I do think there's a much more acceptance now of players speaking out'


Benjamin Watson: 'I do think there's a much more acceptance now of players speaking out'

The death of George Floyd last week in Minneapolis has sparked protests throughout the United States as people have gathered to raise awareness and call for change in the fight against racial injustice.

Many athletes across different sports have been leaders in that movement, including a few right here in Boston.

Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown drove 15 hours from Boston to Atlanta to engage in peaceful protests last weekend. Celtics centers Enes Kanter and Vincent Poirier, as well as guard Marcus Smart, participated in peaceful protests in Boston on Sunday.

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NBA players aren't alone, though. The 2020 NFL season isn't scheduled to start until September, but many of the league's players have not been shy about speaking out or taking part in peaceful protests in recent days.

NFL players also haven't been afraid to protest racial injustice before games, including former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who knelt during the national anthem during the 2016 season. Several other players have done the same since Kaepernick.

Former Patriots tight end Benjamin Watson joined the latest episode of the "Patriots Talk Podcast" with Tom E. Curran to discuss a number of topics related to the events that have unfolded throughout the nation over the last week or so.

Does Watson think NFL players will be more willing to and unified in protesting when the season begins, and will the league, its fans and the owners be more receptive to understanding those protests if they happen?

"Yes, yes, and yes," Watson said. "I think we are on a continuum of awareness, we're on a continuum of involvement of many people in different phases and spheres of life who are getting on board with this. Some people may not even agree that it's an issue, but they say, 'You know what, everyone else is doing it and I don't want to be left out.' And so they get involved, maybe disingenuously, but then over time they realize the truth of the matter. And that's great as well, even if they get in on false pretenses. At some point if they realize it, then I think the goal has been accomplished. I do think there's a much more acceptance now of players speaking out about these things."

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Watson also thinks the Patriots have done well to allow their players to speak out and make an impact on important matters away from the football field.

"And I'll say this, I was talking to someone the other day with the team, and I was telling him just that the Patriots, I believe, have done a good job in allowing their players to get involved with issues outside of the game," Watson said. "They've provided a space. There was a bill about education that came up last year, here in Massachusetts. A number of players got on board, speaking about it and talking about it. They had support from Mr. Kraft. They had support from coach Belichick to go and do those things. Support from the PR department. Other teams aren't like that, so there are varying degrees of which the organization will support and understand.

"I think the biggest thing here in Boston that I've seen is the reaction, especially of fans, when players are kneeling -- everybody can get behind education, but when it comes to police brutality and racism and those sorts of things, it gets a little touchy. I do think that there will be more of an acceptance -- there will be more involvement from other players. We've seen an outcry from players, black, white, it didn't matter, when it came to George Floyd. I've had multiple players reach out, 'I don't understand these things, give me some resources so I can read about what's been going on that I'm just not privy to.' I think there's definitely going to be a greater awareness and a greater togetherness with at least in identifying the issue. ..."

You can check Watson's full conversation with Curran in the latest episode of the Patriots Talk Podcast on the NBC Sports Boston Podcast Network or on YouTube.

Kraft family issues statement on George Floyd's death: 'We are horrified by the acts of racism we've witnessed'


Kraft family issues statement on George Floyd's death: 'We are horrified by the acts of racism we've witnessed'

The New England Patriots reacted Tuesday night to the death of George Floyd by releasing a statement from the Kraft family.

Floyd died in Minneapolis police custody last week, which has led to protests over racial injustice throughout the United States over the last several days. 

Here is the Kraft family statement in full:

"Over the last several days, we have tried to listen, learn and reflect. We have been at a loss for the appropriate words, perhaps because there are none to adequately describe the horrific incidents of the last few weeks. It is impossible for us to comprehend what happened to George Floyd or the pain his family must be feeling, a pain that resonates with so many others who have lost loved ones in similar brutalities that were not captured on video for the rest of the world to see. We cannot begin to understand the frustration and fear members of our black community have faced for generations. Recent events have shined a light on a topic that demands much more attention.

"Our country deeply needs healing. We don't have the answers, but we do know that we want to be a part of the change. As leaders in the New England community, we must speak up. Here is where our family, and our organization, stands:

"We are horrified by the acts of racism we've witnessed. We are heartbroken for the families who have lost loved ones, and we are devastated for our communities of color, who are sad, who are exhausted, who are suffering. We know that none of the sadness, exhaustion or suffering is new. We know it is systemic. Our eyes, ears and hearts are open.

"Our family has a long history of supporting vulnerable people in our communities and advocating for equality. But past efforts don't mean anything until we all stand on equal footing in America, so we must act in the present, and not simply rely on what we've done in the past. There remains much work to be done. We will not rest on statements, because words without actions are void. Rather, we will work harder than ever before – through our philanthropy, community engagement, advocacy and supporting the work of our players – to build bridges, to promote equality, to stand up for what's right and to value ALL people."