Koppen on Mankins trade: 'Shocked but not shocked'

Koppen on Mankins trade: 'Shocked but not shocked'
August 27, 2014, 6:15 pm
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On Monday, the Patriots traded away one of their longtime leaders and captains, Logan Mankins, to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The left guard had been a mainstay on the offensive line since he was drafted by the team in 2005. And just like that, Bill Belichick has sent him off to Tampa Bay for tight end Tim Wright and a fourth round pick.

Fellow former Patriots offensive lineman Dan Koppen joined CSNNE's Kyle Draper on Wednesday in the aftermath of the trade to discuss his thoughts.

"I'm shocked but then again I'm not shocked," Koppen said. "Bill's always said, he's said this publicly, privately, he's gonna do what's best for the team. And right, wrong, or indifferent to anybody's opinion he's going to do it without any hesitation. In this case he felt this was a better move for the team going forward in the long run."

The offensive line is obviously going through a major transformation now with the trade of Mankins, and previously the retirement of offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia. Now, Dave DeGuglielmo will coach a young line that has plenty of growing up - together - to do.

"Generally it takes time for guys to play with one another, definitely more than a few weeks to get comfortable with what people are going to do and trust that they're going to do what they're supposed to do," Koppen said. "Like you said, Scar's (Scarnecchia) always been that X-factor. Whether guys weren't in that lineup for a number of reasons, whether they were retired, or injured, or cut or left for free agency, Scar was that trust that New England had and within the organization and within the public that the o-line was going to be OK and they were going to get the job done. That is gone right now. We don't know. Good or bad, Googs (DeGuglielmo), the offensive line coach doesn't have that trust yet and he's going to have to build that and he's going to have to build that line back up."

It certainly would have been a bit easier to build with Mankins around. And Koppen expects to see the trickle-down effect in terms of seeing his loss on and off the field - and that will start with Tom Brady.

"I think anytime you lose a player like Logan you're going to take a hit," Koppen said. "It doesn't matter if it's the left tackle, left guard, center, guard, wide receiver, Logan is such a good player, such a good guy in that locker room . . . that specific unit is going to take a hit, that media room is going to take a hit, and the guys playing around him. Tom is one of those guys who's going to have to work his way through it."

For the players still on the team, there isn't much time to think about Mankins' departure. It's back to work.

"It's going to play out like it always does," Koppen said of the locker room. "They're back in there working today getting ready for the game tomorrow night. Unfortunately the guys understand it's a business. Some of those cuts or trades hurt more than others, but in the end and in the long run that team is going to move forward with the guys that they have that go out on the field. As long as Bill is in there that's not going to change. Bill's around, Tom's around, this team still has chances to win football games."