No strangers to trades involving big names, the Patriots are back at it again on Tuesday. This time, Mike Reiss for ESPN.com is reporting the club has acquired third-year linebacker Kyle Van Noy from the Lions.
ESPN’s Field Yates says the Lions will send a seventh-round draft pick along with Van Noy, and get a sixth-round choice back from the Patriots in return.
A second-round draft pick in 2014, Van Noy has been a huge disappointment in Detroit. The 26-year-old played only sparingly his first two seasons before being elevated to starter in 2016. He has 23 tackles and one pass breakup in seven games.
It’s telling that the Lions would choose to move on from Van Noy midseason, particularly given their issues at linebacker. DeAndre Levy hasn’t played since Week 1, Jon Bostic is on injured reserve and currently there are only three other linebackers on the 53-man roster. That’s not exactly dealing from a position of strength.
Meanwhile, the Patriots pick up an intriguing prospect who might have been out of his element as a traditional 4-3 outside linebacker. In four seasons at BYU, Van Noy racked up 61.5 tackles for loss, 25 sacks, five forced fumbles, 11 pass breakups and eight interceptions and was twice named a third-team All-American in a 3-4 defense.
Obviously, the Patriots utilize a 4-3 as well, but if anybody can make the most of Van Noy’s unique abilities, it’s Bill Belichick. No doubt, the head coach already had some niche or role in mind when he made the deal.
Seeing as the cost wasn’t very high, it was certainly a risk worth taking anyway.