Report: 'Multiple teams' called Patriots about Ryan Mallett trade

Given the paucity of quality quarterbacks in the 2013 NFL Draft, it should come as no surprise to anyone that teams with bad quarterback situations are interested in other teams' backups -- like, for instance, Patriots backup quarterback Ryan Mallett.

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According to Greg Bedard of the Boston Globe, "multiple teams" have dialed up the Patriots and inquired about acquiring Mallett, who was a third-round pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.

Bedard's sources tell him that "the odds are slightly stronger that Mallett is dealt than kept" by the Patriots once all is said and done.

However, compensation, as usual, is the issue. The Pats invested a third-round pick in Mallett in 2011, at a time when they clearly didn't need a quarterback. They've spent the past two years teaching him the ins and outs of becoming the next Tom Brady (and not the next Matt Cassel to anyone who's interested in trading, thank you very much) and want to be justly compensated. Who can blame them?

Bedard believes that a second-round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft or a 2014 first-round pick would probably get the job done. That brings into question whether or not the Browns, run by unabashed Mallett fan and Belichick buddy Mike Lombardi, are in play then, because they have no second-round pick this year.

They could obviously give up their first-round pick next year, but that's a tiny, dangerous limb to climb out on if you're running Cleveland. Mallett busting out (in the bad way) would be a disaster, particularly after the Browns used a 2012 first-round pick on Brandon Weeden. Even if it's not Cleveland, it makes sense that the Patriots figure out a way to move Mallett to someone this year. They have picks, people are in need of quarterbacks and the sort of quarterback you're going to get in the second round of this year's draft is a total crapshoot.

I'm a Mike Glennon fan (it's not bias, it's exposure) but I can't tell you for certain he's going to work out as an NFL quarterback. The same goes for guys like Ryan Nassib, E.J. Manuel and even Geno Smith. Of course, Mallett's been under a cheap contract for two years now. He's got just two years left on his rookie deal, which means he won't be cheap labor for the same amount of time as whoever you take in the 2013 draft. And he's still an unknown, even if he's been working with Belichick and Co. for the past few years.

The real lesson here? If you're looking for a quarterback this year, you're probably already in big trouble.

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Will Brinson joined CBS Sports in 2010 and enters his seventh season covering the NFL for CBS. He previously wrote for FanHouse along with myriad other Internet sites. A North Carolina native who lives... Full Bio

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