The 49ers paid up to land Christian McCaffrey from the Panthers ahead of Week 7, and the Jets recently acquired James Robinson from the Jaguars. But even more running back deals could be on the way. Amid ongoing speculation about the availability of the Rams' Cam Akers and the Browns' Kareem Hunt, two other veterans at the position are reportedly drawing interest ahead of the Nov. 1 trade deadline: the Patriots' Damien Harris, and the Vikings' Alexander Mattison.
Harris, 25, has seen a decrease in action amid Rhamondre Stevenson's emergence in New England, but just last year he eclipsed 1,000 scrimmage yards as the team's top ball-carrier. Other teams are now inquiring about the former third-round draft pick, per PFF. The Vikings, meanwhile, have reportedly been since before the start of the season. The fourth-year backup has been in a reduced role behind Dalvin Cook under new coach Kevin O'Connell, and he's on the final year of his rookie contract. Once again, per Heavy.com, Mattison is on the radar of multiple teams.
Considering how often the Patriots have tended to rotate backs under coach Bill Belichick, Harris feels more likely to stay put, if only to serve as Stevenson insurance. Mattison, on the other hand, could be viewed as expendable considering he's approaching 2023 free agency; the Vikings also have 2021 fourth-rounder Kene Nwangwu and rookie fifth-rounder Ty Chandler on the roster behind Cook. New general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah has proven particularly interested in forward-thinking trades.
Neither Harris nor Mattison would likely command much more than a mid- or late-round pick in return. While McCaffrey was dealt for a package including several Day Two selections, Robinson was moved for just a conditional sixth-rounder.