Tom Brady Has Reached Out to Deion Branch

The Boston Globe reports that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has frequently been in touch with Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Deion Branch over the last week.

According to the report, knowing that a Randy Moss trade was in the works, Brady has talked to Branch about returning to the Patriots, who Branch played for between 2002 and 2005.

Branch, 31, caught 213 passes for 2,744 yards and 14 touchdowns, and was named MVP of Super Bowl XXXIX, for New England before a contract dispute prompted his trade to the Seahawks on September 11, 2006 in exchange for a first-round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft.

Foot, heel, calf, and knee injuries have limited Branch to 51 games over the last 4+ seasons.

Healthier than he's been in recent seasons, Branch has 13 receptions for 112 yards and a touchdown in 2010, but with the selection of Golden Tate in the 2010 NFL Draft, the emergence of second-year receiver Deon Butler, and the recent signing of Brandon Stokley, a veteran slot receiver well-versed in Seattle's offense, the Seahawks are amiable to unloading Branch and the nearly $10 million remaining on his current contract. ($3.86M in 2010, $5.95M in 2011)

New England is armed with multiple picks in the first four rounds of the 2011 NFL Draft, but considering Branch's age, injury history, contract, and the timing of a possible trade, a conditional mid-to-late pick (rounds 5-7) in 2011 or 2012 is likely enough to get a deal done.

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