As the trade deadline approaches — and as the COVID-19 protocol as a practical matter accelerates the closing of the window for teams that hope to have new players ready to go for Week Nine — there’s an unlikely name to watch: Michael Thomas.

Some in league circles believe that the Saints could be willing to move him, and/or that Thomas could be interested in moving.

Two weeks ago, Thomas punched a teammate during practice. The Saints suspended him without really suspending him, fining him the amount of a game check and not putting him on the active roster for a Monday night game against the Chargers. Now, Thomas has a hamstring injury to go along with the high ankle sprain that he suffered six weeks ago tomorrow.

Only Thomas and the Saints know whether he could actually play on Sunday, or whether he’s simply being parked to preserve potential trade value. Only Thomas (and his agents) and the Saints know whether the two sides are thinking about going their separate ways and hoping that someone will call the Saints and initiate discussions aimed at making it happen.