- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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The New England Patriots feel they are well-stocked at quarterback. Future Hall of Famer Tom Brady continues to play at an elite level while New England develops Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett behind the scenes.
But New England coach Bill Belichick is always searching for valuable draft picks. That begs this question: Would New England trade Hoyer for the right price? Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald brought up the possibility this week.
The Patriots put a second-round tender on Hoyer this offseason. It's an indication of how much the Patriots value their back. But it also shows the rest of the league won't touch the quarterback for such a high pick.
But there is always a threat of quarterback injuries in training camp and the preseason. Each injury would increase Hoyer's stock in the trade market, especially if a team gets desperate.
Mallett, a 2011 third-round pick, is pushing Hoyer for the No. 2 job anyway this offseason. During my visit to Patriots minicamp, I actually felt Hoyer struggled and Mallett looked sharper. (But I won't overrate practice in June.)
Quarterback depth is always needed in the NFL. So there's no reason for New England to make a trade unless another team knocks the Patriots over with an offer. The Patriots probably will keep an eye on quarterback injuries around the league this summer -- just in case.
4dField Yates and Rich Cimini