Monday, October 11, 2010

SEAHAWKS: Deion Branch traded to Patriots

The Seahawks traded wide receiver Deion Branch to the Patriots for a 2011 fourth-round draft pick.

The talks of a trade reuniting Branch with New England had reportedly been taking place since last Wednesday night; hours after the Patriots traded disgruntled and future Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss to the Minnesota Vikings. The Patriots were looking for a deep throw option to open the field for other receivers such as Wes Welker.

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Seattle's addition of many younger, talented players (Golden Tate, Deon Butler, and Mike Williams), and their attitude of rebuilding the team allowed 31- year-old Branch to become expendable.

Both of the teams also had bye weeks so a trade was expected to go down before the weekend. The fourth-round pick the Seahawks received in return for Branch essentially covers the cost of running back Marshawn Lynch, who was traded by the Buffalo Bills to the Seahawks last week.

On the other side, the Patriots had two picks in the fourth-round in next year’s draft, so they could easily afford to bring Branch. Branch is popular among the staff and players of New England and had been communicating with Patriots QB Tom Brady about returning to the Patriots.

His career in Seattle have proved to be disappointing and plagued with constant injury. In his 4 years and 4 weeks as a Seattle Seahawk, Branch totaled 2,347 yards, 40 games started, 90 receptions and 15 touchdowns. Not the performance you’d expect from a number one wide receiver he was supposed to be.

To put that in perspective, Moss had more receptions, touchdowns, and over half as many yards in one year as Branch had in his entire 4+ year Seahawk career. His final appearance as a Seahawks was two Sundays ago in a 20-3 loss to the St. Louis Rams, where he caught only 1 pass for 10 yards.

According to, Branch’s agent, Jason Chayut, said of Branch “(He’s) as excited as can be.”

Branch came over from New England in a trade to Seattle in 2006 for a first round draft pick and signed a 6 year 39 million dollar contract upon arriving. His best season as a Seahawk came in 2006, when he had 725 yards receiving, 53 receptions, 13 games started, and 4 touchdowns. His best overall year came in his last year with the Patriots in 2005, where he hauled in 78 receptions for 998 yards and started 15 games and caught 5 touchdowns. This year, Branch only had 112 yards receiving on 13 receptions. He started 3 games and caught 1 touchdown.

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