Well, it looks like it may have just gotten harder for the New England Patriots to add a potential impact player at the wide receiver position ahead of the 2019 NFL trade deadline.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Cincinnati Bengals aren't expecting wide receiver A.J. Green to return to the field until after the league's Oct. 29 trade deadline. Green has missed the entire season while recovering from an ankle injury he suffered during offseason workouts.
There had been speculation that Green could draw interest from receiver-needy teams across the league. And that would include the Patriots, who were rumored to be interested in him in recent weeks. That notion certainly makes sense. The Patriots (6-0) are desperate for receiver help while Green is one of the best receivers in the NFL (when healthy) and is playing for an 0-6 Bengals team.
Seeing Cincinnati move the 31-year-old veteran and his expiring contract to get assets would be a sensible move for them as they look to rebuild. And seeing the Patriots sacrifice assets to patch one of their biggest weaknesses wouldn't be a surprise either.
That said, head coach Zac Taylor has been adamant that the Bengals won't be moving Green. And the veteran receiver has expressed an admiration for Larry Fitzgerald, who has played his entire career with the Arizona Cardinals, so he didn't seem thrilled by the idea of being traded either. But he did acknowledge that he could be traded and is "prepared for anything."
With Green now out beyond the trade deadline, it would further complicate an already unlikely-looking trade. Teams will be wary of his medical issues and without seeing him on the field, they aren't likely to pay the price it would likely cost to get the Bengals to ship out Green.
The Patriots will likely look elsewhere for potential receiver help. While Green would have been an ideal target, it just doesn't seem that he will be on the move unless the Bengals change their minds about moving him or change their asking price for his services.
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