The New England Patriots reached agreement with three players on the first day of the free-agency signing period Thursday, including cornerback Stephon Gilmore of the Buffalo Bills, according to media reports.

As for backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, whether he’ll remain with the Patriots next season is uncertain, but a trade Thursday between the Cleveland Browns and Houston Texans might increase the chances of a deal.

With an eye on making another move at quarterback, Cleveland acquired veteran Brock Oswelier and a 2018 second-round pick in a stunning trade with the Texans, who were looking for a partner to help them get rid of the quarterback’s $16 million guaranteed contract.

At first, the unusual trade was met with the usual Browns-being-Browns skepticism.

But, the deal was made simply to give Cleveland more assets to perhaps trade for another quarterback, such as Garoppolo, and allows the Texans to clear salary-cap space to make a run at a quarterback.

The Browns haven’t decided what they’ll do with Osweiler, and his arrival doesn’t necessarily affect any decisions on Robert Griffin III, who is due a roster bonus this weekend.

But having Osweiler – and another high draft pick – provides the Browns with more ammunition to finally get their messy quarterback situation cleaned up. It’s possible they’ll try to entice the Patriots to move the 25-year-old Garoppolo, who won two starts last season while filling in when Tom Brady was suspended.

Cleveland has two first-round picks, Nos. 1 and 12, and two second-rounders this year, and three second-round picks in 2018.

The Patriots, meanwhile, made a move to solidify their secondary by acquiring the 6-foot-1, 190-pound Gilmore, who was the No. 10 overall pick in the 2012 draft and has played five seasons with the Buffalo Bills, intercepting 14 passes in 68 games.

Adam Schefter of ESPN reported that Gilmore’s new contract will be a five-year, $65 million deal, including $40 million guaranteed.

Gilmore’s signing means the Patriots are unlikely to keep both Malcolm Butler and Logan Ryan, who are also cornerbacks. Ryan is an unrestricted free agent and Butler is a restricted free agent, giving the Patriots the right to match any offer he receives. If the Patriots decline to match an offer, they would get a first-round draft pick from the team that signs Butler.

Several media outlets reported that the Patriots might be trying to work out a trade with the New Orleans Saints involving Butler and Saints wide receiver Brandin Cooks. The Patriots previously offered their No. 1 draft pick for Cooks but were turned down, according to reports.

It may take more than Butler to get Cooks, who has been the subject of trade rumors ever since the NFL scouting combine last week. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported that the Saints are looking for a defensive starter and multiple draft picks, maybe over two years, in exchange for Cooks.

Cooks, who has posted back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons, hired high-power agent Ryan Tollner in the offseason, and he’s been vocal about his frustration in the Saints’ offense.

New Orleans Coach Sean Payton and General Manager Mickey Loomis have both said the asking price for Cooks would be high, and the Saints could still be fielding offers from the Titans and Eagles.

The Pats also re-signed two of their own free agents – defensive lineman Alan Branch and safety Duron Harmon. Branch got a two-year contract worth $12 million, and Harmon agreed to a four-year deal that could be worth as much as $20 million.

Harmon, 25, appeared in all 16 games of the regular season, registering 29 tackles and an interception.

Harmon also had a strong postseason, appearing in all three games with an interception against Houston.