The Miami Dolphins have less of a need for so many receivers after adding Tyreek Hill and Cedrick Wilson at the position this offseason. Thanks to a sudden surplus, there was word that DeVante Parker could be the odd man out. Now, that has come to fruition, with Parker traded to the New England Patriots according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
In return for Parker and a 2022 5th round pick, the Patriots are sending Miami, their AFC East rivals, a 2023 third-round pick. Both teams ultimately got what they wanted in the deal, but who got the better part of the deal?
Did Miami Dolphins get enough in return for DeVante Parker?
On one hand, the Dolphins no longer had a strong need for DeVante Parker on their depth chart. Once Tyreek Hill became available, chances are, the Dolphins realized the opportunity of a lifetime and gauged the value of having Parker come back as one of their starters opposite Jaylen Waddle or adding Hill. Obviously Hill was the priority, and rightfully so.
Still, Parker offers playmaking ability, not to the extent as Hill, but he’s a big target at 6-foot-3, 219 pounds. It appears the Cowboys already have their plan in place, with Wilson coming in at 6-foot-2, 200 pounds.
Now they’ll move on with a top three consisting of Hill, Waddle, and Wilson, with Mike Gesicki likely returning as their tight end. It’s a very strong pass-catching corps for Tua Tagovailoa, no excuses anymore.
- DeVante Parker contract (2022): $8.7M cap number, $5.4M dead money, $3.3M cap savings
As far as whether the Dolphins got enough in return for their 2015 first-round pick, they actually did quite well. Sure, a future third-round pick doesn’t give them much immediate ammo to use, but it allows the Dolphins to reload once again next season, when they’ll have two first-round picks.
In fairness, it’s about the going rate for a 29-year-old receiver who hasn’t been able to stay healthy. The biggest win for the Dolphins here is shedding Parker’s salary off their books as they look to continue shoring up their roster.
Trade grade for Dolphins: B+
Bill Belichick strikes again
For the Patriots, this trade, while not magnanimous, has to be considered a win. For now. As we’ve seen frequently from Belichick over the years, he buys low on a player who has the potential to be an impact starter next season. Chances are, if Parker can stay healthy, he will be.
- DeVante Parker stats (2021): 40 catches, 515 receiving yards, 2 TD catches
- Parker stats (career): 338 receptions, 4,727 receiving yards, 24 TD catches
Sure, at first glance, Parkers numbers from last season aren’t overly impressive. But he only played 10 games, battling shoulder and hamstring injuries. If we rewind back to 2019, Parker put up 1,202 receiving yards and nine touchdown receptions. The ability is in there, it’s just a matter of keeping him on the field.
This trade gives the Patriots a chance to take on a player for a low cost, who has the potential to break into the starting lineup. As of now they have Jakobi Meyers, Kendrick Bourne, and Nelson Agholor. Parker should be able to compete for one of those top three roles, and the Patriots aren’t expected to be finished adding to their group of pass-catchers, hoping Mac Jones can maintain success in year two.
The Patriots may have won this trade for 2022 but giving up a third-round pick in 2023 could come back to bite if Parker can’t become an immediate contributor. Adding a fifth-round selection this year too is simply a bonus. As usual, we can’t fully grade this deal until we see just how Parker fits in with the Pats.
Trade grade for Patriots: B