The “offseason” waters have not been calm, but the stone causing the biggest ripple so far is that the Saints traded Brandin Cooks to the Patriots.
Don’t get me wrong. The Osweiler “salary dump” caused a ripple, but he might be a free agent again before next week. When the Tony Romo saga stops, that might be bigger. And the Alshon Jeffrey signing was big. Yet the Cooks trade might impact more Fantasy players than any other move so far this new NFL year.
For those unaware, the Saints traded Cooks and a 2017 fourth round pick to the Patriots for 2017 first and third round picks.
The Patriot-haters are not going to be happy. Two of New England’s biggest needs were CB and WR. They got one of the top corners in Stephon Gilmore and now have added Cooks too. Sure, the Pats gave up some premium picks, but do they really have that many holes to fill?
Let;s look at why I think Brandin Cooks should make an immediate impact.
Saints Trade Brandin Cooks To The Patriots
I was kind of excited to draft either Chris Hogan or Malcolm Mitchell this year. After this trade for Brandin Cooks? Not so much. Cooks immediately slots in as the Patriots most dangerous receiver, especially down the field. Julian Edelman should continue to gobble up targets on slants and shorter range patterns. Mitchell and Hogan, however, will be left battling for scraps in three wide receiver sets.
And lest we forget that the Patriots love to run 2-TE formations and have that Rob Gronkowski fellow, not to mention recently acquired Dwayne Allen. Tom Brady must be jumping out his Ugg boots!
So Brady, Gronk, and all of your NE studs should not see any dip in production. They might actually see a jump in production with Cooks preventing opposing defenses from double-teaming underneath. But your secondary players in New England will be negatively impacted. Those of you still holding onto Danny Amendola for example might want to loosen your grip.
On the Saints side, wide receivers Willie Snead and 2016 sensation Michael Thomas see an immediate boost in their Fantasy production. Drew Brees should be fine this year, but his already dwindling dynasty value might take even more of a hit. I can’t shake the feeling that New Orleans drafts Brees’ successor with the pick obtained from the Patriots.
Should I Draft Brandin Cooks in 2017
Brandin Cooks is the best downfield weapon the Patriots have had since Randy Moss.
Does that answer your question?
Cooks has 17 touchdowns and over 2,300 receiving yards over the last two seasons. While his role was similar to the other receivers while in New Orleans, he will be the clear downfield threat for New England. He might actually see fewer receptions in New England, though. We know they love to spread the ball around. However, he should easily make up for that dip with a surge in yardage and he might possibly see double-digit touchdowns.
Cooks going to the Patriots might impact a lot of different players value, but his value has absolutely shot upward.
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