John Ross III wants out of Cincinnati. The Bengals wide receiver is discontented with his lack of snaps and made that clear via his agent, Brad Cicala, as the NFL Network's Mike Garofalo reported Tuesday, two weeks before the Nov. 3 trade deadline.
While the 25-year-old has flashed plenty of talent, he hasn't quite panned out.
In 2017, Ross posted a record 4.22-second 40-yard dash time, which spiked his draft stock, and the Bengals selected him with the ninth pick.
As a rookie, Ross didn't record a reception while he battled knee and shoulder injuries, and was a healthy scratch for multiple games. During 2018 and 2019, the Washington product posted all-or-nothing stat lines, as shown by his 10 touchdown receptions and 15 drops.
It's clear Ross can find the end zone and use his speed to extend plays. Yet he must show more consistency with his hands to earn a quarterback's trust, as he has a 41.5 percent catch rate.
Perhaps Ross can develop with more targets in a different offense. He may also need better quarterback play. With that in mind, we'll take a look at three ideal trade destinations for him amid a contract season.
New England Patriots
The Patriots need outside speed. At 34, Julian Edelman can still make some shifty moves out of the slot, but he won't run away from defenders. If opponents double-team him, quarterback Cam Newton doesn't have a viable secondary option at wide receiver or tight end.
N'Keal Harry could serve as a big target (6'4", 225 lbs), but he hasn't turned into a solid perimeter threat. He's logged 18 receptions for 166 yards and a touchdown in his second year, and Ross could help the possession wide receiver by complementing him with elusiveness.
Damiere Byrd has started in four out of five games and caught 17 passes for 217 yards. He also lists second on the team in the latter category behind Edelman, which further illustrates a need for a No. 2 wideout.