Another wide receiver has come and gone from the New England Patriots' radar.
The Buffalo Bills reportedly acquired Stefon Diggs from the Vikings in a blockbuster trade Monday, sending four draft picks (including a 2020 first-rounder) to Minnesota for the talented wide receiver.
Apparently that price was too rich for New England's blood.
The Patriots discussed a potential Diggs trade with the Vikings before they dealt him to Buffalo, Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer reported Tuesday, adding the Washington Redskins had interest in Diggs, as well.
Breer also reported Monday night the Patriots were involved in trade talks for DeAndre Hopkins before the Houston Texans dealt the All-Pro receiver to the Arizona Cardinals.
It's clear New England needs receiving help after finishing the 2019 season with no reliable pass-catchers outside Julian Edelman. Head coach Bill Belichick reportedly is targeting some elite options, too, but seemingly wasn't willing to pay a premium for Diggs or Hopkins, as NFL Media's Mike Giardi suggested Tuesday.
As our Phil Perry reported Tuesday morning, the Cleveland Browns are unlikely to trade top wideout Odell Beckham Jr. So, if the Patriots still want to upgrade at receiver, their best bets might be (what's left of) the free-agent pool or the 2020 NFL Draft, where they have 12 selections.
As for Diggs -- who put up 1,130 receiving yards on 63 catches last season but reportedly didn't get along with Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins -- he'll be out to show New England what it missed when the Bills play their AFC East rivals in 2020.
Stefon Diggs has finally been traded. But it wasn't to the New England Patriots.
Instead, Diggs will be heading to one of the Patriots' AFC East rivals. He landed with the Buffalo Bills, according to Fox Sports' Jay Glazer.
And according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Bills gave up a massive package to get Diggs. The package included four draft picks including the No. 22 overall selection.
Diggs has long been the subject of trade rumors after struggling to connect with Kirk Cousins this past season. After Cousins signed a two-year extension with the Minnesota Vikings, Diggs sent out a cryptic tweet that led many to believe he would be on the move.
And, lo and behold, he now is.
It's somewhat understandable why the Patriots wouldn't want to give up the massive amount of draft capital that the Bills did to get Diggs. The Patriots need to plug several holes on their team and offloading that much draft capital without an assurance that Tom Brady would return would surely be a risk, even for a player as talented as Diggs.
But now, the Patriots will face Diggs twice a year for the remaining four years on the 26-year-old's contract.
Last season with the Vikings, Diggs caught 63 passes for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns, averaging a career-high 17.9 yards per reception. He has logged back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and will now have a chance to be a true No. 1 receiver for Josh Allen.
Diggs was the second big-name receiver to be traded on Monday. DeAndre Hopkins was dealt to the Arizona Cardinals earlier in the day for a much lesser package.
The Stefon Diggs trade rumors had been quiet of late -- until the Minnesota Vikings wide receiver dumped kerosene on them.
Here are the two tweets Diggs sent hours after the NFL's legal tampering window for free agents opened Monday:
And here's the context: After all but admitting he wanted a trade out of Minnesota this past season, Diggs removed all Vikings-related content from his Instagram last month.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman recently pushed back against the notion Minnesota would trade Diggs, who has four years remaining on a five-year, $72 million contract.
Listen and subscribe to Phil Perry's Next Pats Podcast here:
But as our Phil Perry points out, it's noteworthy that Diggs would tweet about a "new beginning" hours after the Vikings signed quarterback Kirk Cousins to a massive extension.
So, where could the 26-year-old wideout be headed is there's fire behind this smoke? The Patriots were floated as a potential Diggs suitor at the 2019 NFL trade deadline and need wide receiver help, so naturally, New England fans chimed in via Diggs' replies.
We've already seen one talented wide receiver swap teams Monday, as the Houston Texans traded DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals in a stunning move.
Could Diggs be next -- and potentially give Tom Brady a reason to stay in New England -- or is he just "tampering" with NFL fans?
UPDATE (3:25 p.m. ET): One fan tried to call Diggs' bluff, but the Vikings wideout seems insistent that a move is coming soon...