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Report: Trade sending Ryan Mallett to Texans “may soon be done”

New England Patriots Training Camp

FOXBOROUGH, MA - JULY 29: Quarterbacks Jonathan Crompton #7 and Ryan Mallett #15 of the New England Patriots participate in training camp at Gillette Stadium on July 29, 2011 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

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The Texans aren’t expected to take a quarterback with the first pick in the NFL Draft and a report concerning a trade for a player who was once coached by Bill O’Brien could take them out of the market for one in any of the early rounds.

Tom Curran of CSN New England reports that a trade sending Ryan Mallett from the Patriots to the Texans “may soon be done.” Curran stresses it’s not a done deal, but that the “machinations have begun.”

If such a trade happened, it would change the outlook for the draft a great deal a few hours before it gets underway. The Texans would add Mallett to Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum and T.J. Yates, which would at the very least muddy their intentions at quarterback. It might not totally eliminate the possibility of adding a quarterback, especially if the Texans like one that isn’t ready to play, but it would signal other priorities.

For the Patriots, dealing Mallett would make their backup quarterback spot a major need and it would make the time spent getting to know the draft’s quarterbacks valuable. With Tom Brady turning 37, it would also give the team a chance to start grooming a potential heir to the throne of the offense.

All of that’s conditional on a trade getting done, of course, but one of the more intriguing drafts in recent memory would get a little more intrigue if this deal goes down.