NFL

Saints willing to trade All-Pro WR Michael Thomas?

Michael Thomas is out for the fifth straight time this season, and the New Orleans Saints might be ready to move on from their top wide receiver for more reasons than one.

According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, “some in league circles” believe the Saints could be willing to trade Thomas. Florio also adds that Thomas could be interested in moving on from the club.

The 27-year-old was initially ruled out for three weeks due to an ankle injury. The Saints then punished him for punching a teammate, benching him during Week 5 against the Los Angeles Chargers. He was on track to play this week, but a hamstring injury suffered during practice ruined any chance of that. 

Before this season, Thomas missed just one game during his rookie campaign in 2016 with an unspecified foot injury.

While trading Thomas isn’t impossible, the Saints will be slapped with a $20 million cap charge in 2021 if they deal him, Florio says. With teams being affected financially by the coronavirus pandemic, the Saints might not be willing to have $20 million dedicated to a player who no longer is on the team. 

If the Saints don’t pull the trigger and trade Thomas this season, they’ll be faced with plenty of questions about his status within the organization, as Florio writes:

“If no one makes an offer that gets the Saints to pull the trigger, the team and Thomas will have the rest of the season to determine whether they can coexist. If that offer comes from a contender for whom Thomas would like to play, it makes sense to monitor the situation.”

Thomas, who is in his fifth season with the Saints, is a three-time Pro Bowler and is coming off a record-breaking season. He was named the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year in 2019 and broke the NFL single-season record with 149 receptions. He also led the league with 1,725 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, eclipsing the 100-yard mark in 10 games. 

If the Saints trade him, they’ll absolutely be expecting a haul in return. 



 

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