After serving three games of a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s performance enhancing substance policy, cornerback Aqib Talib has been traded to the New England Patriots according to Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com:
“The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced Thursday they have traded cornerback Aqib Talib and a 2013 seventh-round draft pick, originally from the Chicago Bears, to the New England Patriots in exchange for their fourth-round pick in 2013.”
With the NFL trade deadline approaching at 4 p.m., the Patriots decided to pull the trigger on this deal to help improve the secondary in New England. The Patriots currently have one of the worst pass defenses in the league giving up an average of 281.1 passing yards per game (28th in the NFL).
Talib’s presence in the secondary will definitely help correct the team’s biggest flaw this season, but it remains to be seen if New England will retain him with the 26-year-old in the final year of his current contract.
Talib has one game left on his suspension for taking Adderall without a prescription before he can make his debut for the Patriots. With New England heading into their bye week, Talib will sit out Week 10’s matchup against the division rival Buffalo Bills and make his debut for head coach Bill Belichick in Week 11 against the Indianapolis Colts.
The addition of Talib is definitely a step in the right direction for the Patriots in terms of upgrading the secondary, but it remains to be seen whether or not it is a game-changer and enough to put New England back in the title-contending conversation.
In four games for the Bucs this season, Talib has 21 tackles and one interception. The interception and seven of 21 tackles on the year came in the Bucs’ Week 3 loss to the Dallas Cowboys.