The New England Patriots are making their first big move of the 2021 offseason. And it will come with the return of a familiar face, as Las Vegas Raiders offensive lineman Trent Brown is returning to the Patriots via trade, according to the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
What the Patriots are sending to the Raiders in exchange for Brown is currently unknown, but ut the deal between the Patriots and Raiders has been “a few weeks in the making,” per Rapoport,
It will also come with a reworked deal for the 6-foot-8, 380-pound Brown, who will reportedly agree to a one-year deal with New England that allows him to become a free agent at the end of the 2021 season. That deal could be worth up to $11 million for Brown, according to ESPN’s Field Yates.
The 27-year-old Brown was originally entering the third year of a four-year, $66 million contract and with nearly $40 million of that guaranteed signed with the Raiders back in 2019. Injuries were an obvious issue for Brown throughout his Raider career, however, as he only played in 16 of a possible 32 games with the franchise, including a career-low five games in 2020 due to a calf injury, knee ailment, and a stint on the league’s COVID list.
Brown, of course, is no stranger to Bill Belichick and the Patriots, having emerged as a legitimate force for the Patriot offensive line, and starting all 16 games at left tackle and winning Super Bowl LIII in his lone season with New England.
The trickle-down effect of Brown’s return to Foxborough will certainly be worth watching, too, as two-time Super Bowl champion and 2020 franchise tag designee Joe Thuney is expected to garner heavy interest on the free agent market. The Patriots are also expected to get Marcus Cannon, who opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID concerns, back on their roster next season.
Brown could be one of many instances of the Patriots taking advantage of what’s expected to be an offseason jam-packed with talented players available via trade or free agency as cap casualties.