Would Derrick Burgess Solve the Pass Rush Issue?

By now, you’ve probably heard the rumors of a Derrick Burgess trade to New England for a second or third round draft pick. However, what would a potential trade for Burgess mean for the Patriots?

For one, it would give the Patriots immediate insurance at outside linebacker.  Burgess, 30, has 47.0 career sacks, most of which have come with the Oakland Raiders since 2005.  He has played defensive end in the 4-3 his entire career, but could presumably make the switch to 3-4 outside linebacker.  The 6’2″, 260 pound end, Burgess has just one year left on his contract at a reasonable price.  However, the Patriots will probably keep in mind that Burgess had just 3.5 sacks in 10 games played last season (although I haven’t watched tape on the Raiders so I’m not really in a position to state that he wasn’t effective.

Currently, the Patriots have Adalius Thomas, Shawn Crable, Pierre Woods, Vince Redd, and Tully Banta-Cain under contract at outside linebacker.  Burgess would certainly add experience, but would also add versatility.  If the Patriots completed a trade for Burgess, and Crable, Woods, or Redd could step up to a certain extent, the Patriots would have the luxury of playing Adalius Thomas at some inside linebacker, where the Patriots need depth following the torn ACL of rookie Tyrone McKenzie.  Worst case scenario?  Both Thomas and Burgess play solely outside linebacker, which would seemingly be an upgrade from the current situation.

The Patriots have been discussing a trade with Burgess since before the draft, so I’m not sure a trade is imminent, although it very well could be close.  My hunch?  The Patriots complete the trade for a 2010 third round pick, as I think that is the middle ground between what the two sides are looking for.

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5 Responses to Would Derrick Burgess Solve the Pass Rush Issue?

  1. SED says:

    This possible Burgess trade doesn’t make sense to me.

    The Pats didn’t draft an OLB this year due to the fact that they felt all the prospects were too short. The current crop of OLB’s on the roster are all 6’5″ or above; sans Banta-Cain, who is apparantly an exception.

    Why would the Pats give up a future draft pick that could potentially fit their mold next year for a 30 year-old 6’2″ DE who maybe on the decline?

    If it happens; then in “Bill We Trust”. However, I’d prefer we continue to get younger and faster as a team to protect the franchises future.

  2. Pavel says:

    I haven’t heard anyone mention his contract situation. He is not happy playing in the last year of his deal in Oakland. Are the Patriots expecting him to be happy playing his last year in New England without getting a new deal? The contract situation coupled with his injury history makes this too risky for a 2nd round pick. 3rd…maybe.

    • Greg says:

      Well, I think he’d prefer to play for a winner in New England with what he deems to be an unfair contract rather than playing for Oakland with what he deems to be an unfair contract.

  3. SED says:

    The word out there is that the Raider’s wanted both Kevin O’Connell and Sebastian Vollmer for Burgess. The Pats turned them down.

    No way are we going to trade a possible franchise quarterback in O’Connell, who could possibly be the future when Brady retires for Derrick Burgess?!

    • Greg says:

      I agree with you 100%. No way in hell. The maximum value I would give up for Burgess is a #3. That’s it.

      The fact is, Shawn Crable has looked excellent in OTA’s. Pierre Woods has shown some flashes. Tully Banta-Cain showed good pass rush skills in 2006, so maybe he can return to that.

      And if all else fails, Rosevelt Colvin might still only be a phone call away.

      I’d rather keep players I just invested a 3rd, and a 2nd for, as well as my next year’s second, then have a undersized 3-4 OLB who may have good talent, but is on the last year of his contract and is turning 31.

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