The Patriots made some headlines today after making two separate trades. While these are minor trades, it looks as if Bill Belichick is in mid-season form with his acquisitions. Having already traded for Barkevious Mingo and Eric Rowe before the season began; the Patriots have been unsurprisingly active on the trade market.
The Patriots acquired linebacker Kyle Van Noy from the Detroit Lions and their seventh round pick for a sixth round pick. Van Noy, a former second round draft pick from BYU in 2014, has accumulated 39 tackles and a sack in just over two seasons now. He has seen his workload increase this season, with 23 of his 39 total tackles coming this season. He profiles as an outside linebacker who is limited in coverage & rushing the passer but can kick inside if needed. He was also a key member of the Lions special teams unit. He is mostly a depth piece for the Patriots, as they have been dealing with injuries to Jamie Collins, Elandon Roberts and Shea McClellin while just losing Jonathan Freeny to the injured reserve.
As for the other trade, the Patriots traded away former 2015 sixth round pick A.J. Derby to the Denver Broncos for a fifth round draft pick. Derby, who made the Patriots active roster this season after sitting out with an injury last season, has only been active for four of the seven games this season. He was used as a blocker mostly while recording no offensive stats. He was also a healthy scratch this past weekend against the Steelers. The Patriots will now have only two active tight ends on the roster, Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett.
With an open roster spot from Anthony Johnson being released yesterday, the Patriots may look to bring another tight end as an emergency. The team had free agent fullback/tight end Marcel Reese in for a workout not too long ago, so he may get another look potentially.
And in other news, following the release of safety Vinnie Sunseri from their practice squad yesterday, the Patriots signed safety Shamiel Gary to the practice squad.