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Report: The Patriots are “sniffing around” for wide receivers and are interested in Deebo Samuel


San Francisco 49ers v New England Patriots Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

It’s officially the offseason, which means we’re destined for off-the-wall rumors and anybody with a podcast or that does a radio interview to lean on their “sources.” And if you think we’re not going to have fun with each and every one, you are sorely mistaken.

Around the NFL Draft last season, the New York Jets reportedly offered their first round pick for Deebo Samuel. That makes sense, as Robert Saleh and his staff understand Deebo’s strength’s and weaknesses. But nothing came of it, and New York ended up selecting wide receiver Garrett Wilson in the draft.

James Stewart of 98.5, the flagship station for the New England Patriots, said the Pats are sniffing around for wide receivers, and mentioned the 2021 All-Pro receiver during a Wednesday segment:

J-Stew: Deebo Samuel. I heard the Patriots, I got a text message from an NFL talent evaluator that the Patriots are sniffing around Deebo Samuel.

Jim Murray: Well this is someone they should be sniffing around, you know, as part of “Bedard’s master five point plan” that he talked about yesterday. Like they need a weapon, right? So, I think if you’re like me, you have some questions as to whether or not the Patriots can find a wide receiver in the draft given their recent drafting of that position. Deebo Samuel is one of the most versatile weapons in the league. Like this is a true weapon, as a running backand wide receiver. The guy can do it all. And look what he’s done to elevate that offense with an “ehhh” kind of quarterback in Jimmy Garoppolo. You have got an “ehhh” quarterback here in my opinion with Mac Jones. You get (Samuel) here that absolutely elevates your offense.

There’s no denying Deebo elevates your quarterback, offense, and play-caller. What Samuel did for the 49ers in 2021 was unforgettable.

During an interview on “I AM ATHLETE” last week, Samuel highlighted how close he is with Kyle Shanahan, citing how often they talk. Deebo went as far to say you’d think Shanahan was his dad.

Shanahan has built a culture with the 49ers where they have a specific style of play on the field. There isn’t a player on the roster more representative of said style than Deebo. So, from his relationship to his talent to his playing style, it’s difficult to believe San Francisco would move on from Samuel.

When you take a peek at Deebo’s contract, a trade becomes even less likely. If San Francisco moves Deebo before June 1, they eat $28 million in dead money. You’d have to get into the post June-1 designation for a trade to make financial sense.

This season, the 49ers would wind up eating about $4 million if dead cap after they move Deebo, but save roughly $15 million in 2024 and $11 million in 2025. There are too many “what ifs” and uncertainties. If the Niners were unwilling to part ways with Deebo last season for an early first-round pick, why would they with even more uncertainty at quarterback?