Peter King on D&K: It would make 'a lot of sense' for Patriots to trade for Le'Veon Bell

Alex Reimer
September 27, 2018 - 12:24 pm

The Patriots are in desperate need of offensive weapons and star Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell still hasn’t reported to play. Under usual circumstances, New England would likely be linked to the dynamic backfield threat. But of course, matters are complicated, since Bell plays for the Steelers. 

Still, that doesn’t mean there’s no chance the Patriots could make a play for Bell. In his weekly interview with “Dale & Keefe,” NBC Sports’ Peter King said he thinks the scenario makes lots of sense, especially since Bell’s value on the trade market may not be that high.

“This is a guy who, 13 games from now, first of all, if you trade for him, you’re going to have to pay him a massive amount of money,” King said. “He’s not going to play under the current terms of his deal. Could he play for the rest of the year with that incorporated in his contract? Yes, but I think he’ll only come back to football if he gets a long-term contract. So you’ve got a lot of teams out there that I’m sure will be very interested in Le’Veon Bell as a free agent next month. But when it comes to giving up a 2 or even a 3, I think teams are going to chafe at that. I do believe, though, at the end of the day he’s going to get traded. If I were a team like New England, and Bill Belichick has always had a very contrarian view about draft choices –– what I mean by contrarian view, is he uses them as currency the way Jimmy Johnson used to. If he needs something, he’ll figure out a way to do it. That’s why I think New England makes sense, although I’m not suggesting in any way it will happen. But I think it makes a lot of sense for the Patriots.”

It’s apparent that Bell, or any player with game-breaking ability, would be a welcome addition to the Patriots’ roster. Through three games, New England is 25th in the league in yards per game and 25th in points. While King says he doesn’t think the Patriots can’t recover, he is concerned about the lack of offensive talent surrounding Tom Brady.

“What would worry me right now about this team is I don’t know where the offense is coming from,” he said. “Now that (Rex) Burkhead is down, that’s another key guy. The fact that James White has not been used a lot, that’s mind-boggling to me. Right now, he’s the second-best offensive weapon to (Rob) Gronkowski. I think he’s got to touch the ball more, both in the running game and getting him the ball in space. That’s the first thing I would institute this week in the game plan against Miami. I think there’s lots of reasons to concerned. But I’ve just seen this movie before. I’m concerned, but in no way do I think this is over.”

In addition to the Patriots’ dismal loss in Detroit, Rob Gronkowski’s candid comments after the game speak to the apparent unusual environment around the team. Gronk confirmed there was a deal on the table to send him to Detroit over the offseason, which he nixed by threatening retirement. King said he thinks the tight end’s comments were made to support Brady.

“That one surprised me, because mostly those things are no commented,” King explained. “I took it to mean, essentially, ‘I will only play for this quarterback, and I don’t want to hear any nonsense about our offense being terrible. This is the only guy I’ll ever play for. … I can’t tell you why he said that, but it was quite interesting.”