The New England Patriots have agreed to a trade that sends third-year tight end Jacob Hollister to the Seattle Seahawks, pending a physical, the Patriots announced on Monday. New England will receive a 2020 seventh-round pick in return.
Hollister made the Patriots as an undrafted rookie out of Wyoming in 2017, playing in 15 regular-season games as a rookie, with his primary impact coming on special teams.
Injuries limited him to eight games in 2018. The 6-foot-4, 245-pound Hollister has totaled eight catches for 94 yards over two seasons.
“He has a lot of football in front of him,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick of Hollister last offseason. “He didn’t have a lot of experience — had some — but has gained a lot and will gain a lot more. I think he’s got a great future. He works hard, he’s a tough kid, he plays hard, practices hard and has become much better at his fundamentals and techniques at his position.”
The Patriots did not select a tight end in this year’s NFL draft, and Hollister was expected to compete for a larger role in 2019 as the team transitions without the retired Rob Gronkowski.
Veteran Austin Seferian-Jenkins is now the Patriots’ most experienced tight end after signing a one-year deal as a free agent, and the team also inked four-year veteran Matt LaCosse (Broncos) to a two-year deal this offseason.
The Seahawks, meanwhile, had four tight ends on their 90-man roster before the Hollister trade: veteran Ed Dickson, Nick Vannett, Will Dissly and Tyrone Swoopes. Seattle has also agreed to terms with undrafted free agent Justin Thomas from Mississippi State, a source tells ESPN.
Dickson, who will be 32 in July, has two years remaining on his contract but is owed no more guaranteed money. He’s set to make $3.3 million in 2019 base salary with a $4.417 million cap charge. Vannett is entering the final year of his rookie deal. Swoopes, a 2017 undrafted free agent, has one catch in two career games. Dissly, last year’s fourth-round pick, is coming off a patella tendon injury that ended his rookie season after four games.
Pete Carroll said Saturday that Dissly is expected to be ready for the start of the season.
“He’s making great progress,” Carroll said. “Really, everybody is excited that he’s going to be OK by the time we open up. At camp it will be a really interesting time to see how far he’s come. He’s running, he’s working, he looks good, his attitude’s great, his weight is up and all that, strength is really good. Everything is pointing toward where he is going to be very competitive. We loved the start he had with us last time around. Our hopes are really high that he will be a big part.”
The Seahawks were projected to have 11 draft picks in 2020 after trading one of their two sixth-rounders next year to move into the seventh-round of this year’s draft for Hawaii wide receiver John Ursua. Their 11 projected 2020 picks included an original seventh-rounder plus a compensatory pick in that round.
According to OverTheCap.com, losing quarterback Brett Hundley in free agency earned Seattle the seventh-round compensatory pick.
ESPN’s Brady Henderson contributed to this report.