Patriots trade QB Jacoby Brissett to the Colts for WR Phillip Dorsett

Shutdown Corner

There have been many NFL trades this preseason, and most are roughly the same: a player who was on the roster bubble being shipped for a mid- or late-round pick.

The trade the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts pulled off Saturday afternoon is much more interesting than that.

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The Patriots sent quarterback Jacoby Brissett, a 2016 third-round pick, to the Colts for receiver and disappointing first-round pick Phillip Dorsett, according to ESPN’s Field Yates. The trade makes sense in some ways but it’s confusing in others. Here are the multiple layers to consider:

• Does this mean something for Andrew Luck’s return date? He’s off the physically unable to perform list, but beyond that the Colts have been overly secretive about Luck’s progress from shoulder surgery. We don’t know if Luck will miss one game, six games, no games at all – there has been practically no information on his recovery. Acquiring Brissett could be a sign Luck will miss more games than the Colts would like … or perhaps they just got an interesting young quarterback for a receiver they didn’t want anymore.

• Where does Dorsett really fit with the Patriots? Sure, New England lost Julian Edelman to a season-ending knee injury. They also are exceptionally deep at receiver, especially since undrafted rookie Austin Carr impressed in camp and the preseason. It’s hard to see where Dorsett will get any playing time, especially considering he has been disappointing with the Colts. However, when the Patriots acquire someone, there’s always a good reason.

• Brissett is coming off a very good preseason finale. He was 28-of-39 for 341 yards, four touchdowns and an interception, and ran for another touchdown. He was a third-round pick last season, so the Patriots obviously liked his skills. And New England probably will need a backup quarterback next season. It’s really hard to envision a scenario in which Tom Brady and free-agent-to-be Jimmy Garoppolo are both back, unless the Patriots franchise-tag Garoppolo to be Brady’s backup. Based on how well Brissett played Thursday, it seemed like he was trending toward being a nice low-cost backup for the Patriots in 2018. Apparently not.

There have been more deals than usual around the NFL over the past few weeks, but few are as intriguing as the Patriots-Colts trade.

Jacoby Brissett was traded by the Patriots to the Colts on Saturday afternoon. (AP)
Jacoby Brissett was traded by the Patriots to the Colts on Saturday afternoon. (AP)

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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