Arizona Cardinals: Has New England emerged as the frontrunner for Hopkins?

Arizona Cardinals v New England Patriots
Arizona Cardinals v New England Patriots / Billie Weiss/GettyImages

It’s becoming likelier by the day that the Arizona Cardinals will trade star receiver DeAndre Hopkins as new favorites emerge.

The New England Patriots may now be the ultimate frontrunners in the DeAndre Hopkins saga following linebacker Matthew Judon’s tweet late last night. So do the Arizona Cardinals finally have a trading partner for their star receiver, or is Judon just igniting an outrageous rumor?

Overall, it wouldn’t be so farfetched if New England made the deal. As it stands, they have no WR1 on the roster with Jakobi Meyers heading into free agency. Not that the Patriots couldn’t re-sign Meyers, but even if they did, they have the minimal compensation necessary to bring Hopkins to the Northeast. 

If such a trade occurs, look for New England to send at least their second round pick (46th overall) and a mid-rounder, either a third or fourth round pick, over. This would give the Cardinals three picks in the top 46, and if they end up trading down in April’s draft, they may end up acquiring even more. 

The Arizona Cardinals could trade Hopkins to the New England Patriots

New England desperately needs to find help for quarterback Mac Jones (or Bailey Zappe). And as it stands, Meyers isn’t enough. To add an experienced receiver like Hopkins who is still in his prime, the Pats are one step closer to competing for the AFC East with what may be three formidable rivals in the Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, and even the New York Jets. 

Meanwhile, the Cardinals will attain a few more potential pieces in their rebuild, and it all starts with the NFL Draft. If they can snag a couple of picks for Hopkins, plus their three projected compensatory selections at a later date, the Redbirds will bring in a sizable draft haul, and a much-needed one. 

As it stands, this potential trade makes sense for both sides. And given Judon’s tweet on the matter, perhaps the two sides are already close to a deal?

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