Los Angeles receives Cooks and New England's No. 136 overall pick in the fourth round in exchange for the Rams' No. 23 overall pick and No. 198 overall in the sixth round.
LA also got the Patriots' 2018 fourth round pick as part of the deal, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter. Cooks had 1,000 yards in his only season with the Patriots after he was acquired in a trade with the Saints.
His receiving yards were second only to tight end Rob Gronkowski, who finished the season with 69 receptions for 1,084 yards and eight TDs. That first-round selection is nine spots higher than the one the Patriots sent to the Saints for Cooks a year ago in a trade that proved to be a fruitful one-year rental for Belichick and Co.
The Giants probably aren't actively shopping Beckham, but have reportedly told teams that price for the mercurial wide receiver would be two first-round picks. When Belichick and Rams coach Sean McVay attend the same coaching clinic in Georgia on Monday, the two teams were able to advance the discussion surrounding Cooks before ultimately coming to an agreement on Tuesday night.
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Cooks was in the final year of his contract and was due $8.5 million this season. The last time the Patriots had two first-round picks in 2012, Belichick moved up to draft Chandler Jones and Dont'a Hightower, two players who helped transform their defense.
It means the Rams are out of the running to acquire Beckham. if the non-committal Giants even decide to trade him. They previously traded for cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, then signed defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, whom they will introduce to the media Wednesday. That gives coach Bill Belichick the ability to go shopping for a young prospect or perhaps to make a deal for a veteran. The Patriots also could be looking to draft Brady's successor.
Julian Edelman is expected to return after suffering a preseason knee injury, and Malcolm Mitchell is also slated to return after spending time on injured reserve with a knee issue.
"On the surface, trading a first-round draft pick for Brandin Cooks when the Rams already have Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods on their roster might seem like a luxury, but when you look at the Rams personnel usage in 2017, another top receiver was a team need". The Rams and quarterback Jared Goff love to throw deep and Cooks is one of the best in the league at hauling in long passes. The idea that Brady will play until he's 45 very well may be aimed at avoiding a farewell tour, with Brady instead simply walking away without advance warning or fanfare after 2018 or 2019, for example.
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