The 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year is available in a trade, but Stephon Gilmore brings baggage, according to ESPN's Dan Graziano and Jeremy Fowler.
The pair reported that the New England Patriots "are in a contract quandary" with Gilmore, who is set to earn $7 million in the final year of his contract next season and is looking to sign a new deal. And his desire to latch on and keep playing "reduces the amount teams are willing to pay in a trade."
Gilmore's 2020 didn't live up to his DPOY campaign a year earlier, as he was limited to 11 games amid a leg injury and a positive test for COVID-19. But that didn't limit speculation on the trade market, as Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reported in early March that "most GMs have considered it a foregone conclusion" that Gilmore would be on the move this offseason.
Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated also said Gilmore's season-ending quad injury is another issue that is limiting interest.
The 30-year-old finished the season with 37 tackles, three pass breakups and an interception, a year after he led the league with six interceptions and 20 passes defended to go with 53 tackles.
Amid the Patriots' historic collapse in 2020, when they finished with their worst record since 2000 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008, Gilmore could be one of a few valuable trade chips. When La Canfora originally reported the interest, he wrote that Gilmore could net a return in the third or fourth rounds of the 2021 NFL draft.
He said the Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers, Arizona Cardinals, Green Bay Packers and New York Giants were among the teams that could be in the market for Gilmore.
New England has long been brewing over a Gilmore trade. The South Carolina product was a No. 10 pick by the Buffalo Bills in 2012. He was previously shopped during the season, as ESPN's Dianna Russini reported in November the Patriots were seeking for a player and a first-round pick in exchange for the star.