The New England Patriots are still in the market for either a wide receiver or tight end despite acquiring wideout Mohamed Sanu from the Atlanta Falcons for a 2020 second-round pick. It was reported that the Patriots are eyeing wide receiver A.J. Green and tight end Tyler Eifert of the Cincinnati Bengals. Also on the Patriots’ list are tight ends O.J. Howard of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Austin Hooper of the Falcons.

Initially, the Buccaneers rejected the Patriots when the latter inquired about Howard’s availability via trade. Now that they have dropped to 2-5 after a three-game losing streak, it looks like the Buccaneers have changed their mind. According to Jenna Laine of ESPN, the Buccaneers are now willing to trade Howard for a substantial offer. Laine did not specifically discuss “substantial offer” but parting ways with Howard could require a first-round pick.

Howard is a good target for the Patriots as he’s still on his rookie contract, which could count around $1.5 million against the salary cap. The Patriots currently have around $2.8 million in salary cap room, enough to make a deal before the Oct. 29 deadline.

Howard could give Patriots impact at tight end

The biggest question for the 24-year-old Howard is his health as he did not play this week in their 27-23 loss to the Tennessee Titans due to a hamstring injury.

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If healthy, Howard can provide immediate impact for the Patriots, who have just two healthy tight ends in Benjamin Watson and Eric Tomlinson. This season, the Buccaneers have underutilized Howard, who has only 13 catches for 176 yards and no touchdown after recording 34 catches for 565 yards and five touchdowns the previous year. They also have Ryan Izzo and Matt LaCosse on the depth chart, but they were both out in their 27-13 win over the Cleveland Browns. Also, Izzo could become a trade target for other teams before the deadline.

Brady calls Beckham a great player

Veteran quarterback Tom Brady spent part of his Monday interview on WEEI's "The Greg Hill Show” speaking about Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. According to Brady, his son, Ben, is a huge Beckham fan so they waited outside the Browns’ locker room to meet the talented wide receiver after the game. Brady also thanked Beckham, who gave him a goat hair cleats after the game.

"I have them. Yeah, that was pretty cool. That was very nice of him,” said Brady. Beckham had a quiet day with just five catches for 52 yards, but Brady called him “a great player” and wished him a “lot of success” amid the Browns’ struggles this season. Aside from Beckham, Brady showed love to Sanu by leaving four hearts on his Instagram post. Sanu caught two passes for 23 yards from Brady in their win over the Browns.

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