Patriots trade Deion Branch - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Patriots trade Deion Branch

September 11, 2006

Foxborough, Ma. - The holdout for Albany's Deion Branch has ended. The New England Patriots traded the former Monroe High star to the Seattle Seahawks Monday for a undisclosed draft choice.

Branch is expected to sign a multi-year contract this week.  

The Seahawks were one of two teams Deion Branch reportedly agreed to a multi-year contract during the one week window the Patriots gave Branch's agent to look for a sign and trade deal with another team two weeks ago.

While Branch had two contract offers, the Patriots wouldn't a trade because the team said they were not offered adequate compensation for a receiver who caught 78 passes for almost 1000 yards last year.

When he wasn't traded, Deion Branch filed two grievances against the Patriots.

One for going back on what Branch contends was a verbal agreement from the team to trade him and Branch accused the Patriots of not bargaining in good faith.

The hearing for the second claim was scheduled to be heard later this week.

Deion Branch was the Patriots second round draft pick in 2002 when he signed a five-year contract.

Branch was scheduled to earn just over one million dollars in the final year of this contract but only because he had earned a $500,000 bonus for his play last season.

The former Super Bowl MVP held out of training camp in hopes for a new contract.

But when talks broke down, Branch wanted to play for a new team.

The defending NFC champion Seattle Seahawks feel they need another receiver to get back to the NFL's title game after their 9-6 season opening win at Detroit.

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That resulted in Branch filing two grievances with the Patriots one of which wass scheduled to be heard later this week. That hearing is likely canceled and Branch will soon sign what is believed to be a six-year contract that will pay him considerably more than the one million dollars he would have earned in New England.