The New England Patriots are 2-4 and sit in third place in the AFC East entering a crucial Week 8 road game against the Buffalo Bills, but right now, it doesn't appear they are anxious to be sellers before next week's NFL trade deadline.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Sunday an update on the team's situation ahead Tuesday's deadline, writing that the Patriots "have given few indications that they would be sellers at the deadline, but a loss Sunday to the AFC East rival Buffalo Bills could change that."
A loss to the Bills would make it quite difficult for the Patriots to make the playoffs for the 12th consecutive season. It also would put New England's streak of 11 straight division titles in serious jeopardy of being snapped.
Even if the Patriots wanted to be sellers, how many players do they have that would be appealing to Super Bowl contenders?
Veteran cornerback Stephon Gilmore is the reigning Defensive Player of the Year award winner and one of the top three players at his position. Left guard Joe Thuney is an All-Pro caliber and not signed beyond this season. Defensive tackle Lawrence Guy also is in the final year of his contract.
Gilmore is the best player the Patriots could decide to move, but they don't have to do it before Tuesday's deadline because he's signed through the 2021 season. If the Patriots don't like offers that come before the trade deadline, they can revisit the conversation during the offseason.
Of course, the Patriots also could beat the Bills on Sunday and decide to buy at the trade deadline. Wide receiver, tight end and offensive line depth are three notable areas of need.
It's unknown which direction the Patriots will ultimately take at the trade deadline, but it looks like the outcome of Sunday's showdown against the Bills could be among the determining factors.