THERE are exactly three weeks until the NFL trade deadline hits and by now, most teams will have an idea of what they can achieve in season 2019. For some contending types, bolstering an area of need could help secure a playoff berth and even lead to a Super Bowl appearance. Or more. Squads trending in the opposite direction might be willing to sell off players in an attempt to recoup assets, most likely draft picks, so they can achieve similar success 3-5 years from now. We saw Oakland pull off the latest move acquiring now-former Bills wideout Zay Jones and over the ensuing weeks, the deals are only going to ramp up. Here are eight negotiations that make sense for all parties involved.
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Free Jalen Ramsey
SEEING Jalen Ramsey wearing a Jaguars jersey ever again is quickly looking more and more unlikely, despite how much Shahid Khan LOVES the All-Pro cornerback. The thought of Ramsey leaving makes the owner’s moustache invert, but the thought of landing two first-round selections would quickly help cheer him up. Philadelphia has the necessary ammunition to pull off such a deal and with their lengthy injury list, an upgrade to their already deep roster makes the most sense. Earlier this year we saw the Dolphins net a pair of firsts for Laramy Tunsil, but giving one top-32 selection, followed by a pair of second’s is still a haul for Ramsey that the Jaguars would likely take. If I was running Philly like Howie Roseman, I’d be willing to land Ramsey for two first’s, even with the young defender due for a pay rise in the near future and that might be the price they have to pay. Regardless of the draft pick specifics, I believe this deal will get pushed through.
Eagles get: Jalen Ramsey, 2021 5th round pick (JAX)
Jaguars get: 2020 1st round pick (PHI), 2020 2nd round pick (PHI), 2021 2nd round pick (PHI), 2021 6th round pick (PHI)
Miami doubles down on the tank
ALREADY this season Miami has added six draft picks via trade, four of which are either first or second-round selections. There’s a chance they’ll continue to wheel and deal and if they do it’s about time they cash in on Kenyan Drake. There was a lot of preseason buzz surrounding his backup Kalen Ballage, who won’t likely have the same impact as Drake, but could still emerge as a key piece of their rebuild – or even another trade asset. Enter the Green Bay Packers, who, one could argue, have their most complete roster during the Aaron Rodgers era. Yes, I’m well aware that Aaron Jones rushed for 100+ yards and four touchdowns against the Cowboys, but the RB depth chart is shallow at best with Jamaal Williams hurt. Drake’s addition could allow them to deploy Jones for 70%-75% of the snaps to be at his devastating best during his rushing attempts while providing them with another valuable backup in the process.
Dolphins get: 2020 3rd round pick (GB)
Packers get: Kenyan Drake
Image from sportsnaut.com
A.J. Green leaves the Bengals…
I am well aware of A.J. Green’s recent injury issues and trading for the second-best wideout in Bengals history comes with a certain amount of risk. However, despite Cincinnati’s recent reports stating they want to hold onto the storied pass catcher, we all know going their separate ways is the best option for both sides. Green has been linked to multiple teams throughout the preseason with the Colts one interesting fit that I think Chris Ballard should explore. If he doesn’t head to Indy, then joining another AFC rival in Buffalo could work out. The 4-1 Bills are off to an impressive start thanks to their stellar defense, allowing the third-fewest points per game in the entire league (14.0). Sophomore starter Josh Allen taking another step in his development has helped, but giving him another receiving weapon would only help their soaring playoff chances. If Green can stay on the field remains to be seen, but trading for him gives the Bills a genuine No. 1 receiver to propel their offense. It’s a risk worth taking.
Bengals get: 2020 3rd round pick (BUF)
Bills get: A.J. Green
… and so does Andy Dalton
IF the Bengals are shipping out A.J. Green, then why stop there? He and Andy Dalton have been Cincinnati lifers, but with Zac Taylor now providing a new voice at the helm, it’s time to clean house. Dalton is still playing good ball and they could get a decent return for their franchise quarterback, while also getting an earlier than expected chance to find his successor. Mitchell Trubisky isn’t to blame for all the Bears’ shortcomings so far in 2019, but it’s fair to say the former second overall pick hasn’t lived up to the hype in the Windy City. Chi-town’s offensive line struggles would soon become Dalton’s problems, and he is definitely an upgrade for the Bears over the former Tar Heel and second-stringer Chase Daniel. It’s important for Chicago, who have the hardest remaining strength of schedule in the league, to maximise on their ferocious defense and a poised veteran could come in very handy. There’s also a scenario in which Trubisky emerges as Taylor’s guy for the future and they still have a top-3 draft selection in their back pocket. I mean, which winless team wouldn’t like a chance at a future franchise guy? The latter is a complicated question, but by shuffling some selections, pulling the trigger fits the timeline of both teams.
Bears get: Andy Dalton, 2020 5th round pick (CIN)
Bengals get: Mitchell Trubisky, 2021 2nd round pick (CHI)
Change of scenery for Josh Norman
IT’S quite clear that Washington isn’t going to be achieving anything of note over the next few years, so dumping salary for additional assets to help their rebuild is a wise maneuver. Players could choose to jump from the burning building that is Redskins HQ, and at nearly 32, Josh Norman is one player who could still provide value to a contending squad. He doesn’t come cheap though with the $12 million he’s owed next season extremely likely to be paid by another team. One such fit could see Norman join the Kansas City Chiefs, who are right in the heart of their Super Bowl window thanks to hitting on reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes in the draft. There are no issues with the offense from KC’s standpoint, but their defense could be improved to help them capitalise on their cheap QB. Norman’s play has declined annually, but a change of scenery could help rejuvenate the one-time Pro Bowl calibre corner.
Chiefs get: Josh Norman
Redskins get: 2021 6th round pick (KC)
Image from nj.com
Emmanuel Sanders gives New England a go-to WR
EVER since the Antonio Brown experiment failed, the Patriots have got by on offense, carving up lacklustre teams and covering gambling lines left, right and center. I have my doubts over how easily they can cruise by on offense when the going gets tough. Doubt Tom Brady at your own peril but it would be nice to add another sparkplug for him to use while the quest to repeat is alive and well. Julian Edelman clearly appears to be nursing a complaint, so I expect the Pats to get creative, with offensive line help also an idea worth flirting with. Diggs or Green might too become appealing, but Emmanuel Sanders is hardly a miss, with the veteran needing out of Denver as Courtland Sutton emerges as a budding pass-catcher. There’s a chance the Broncos ask for a sweeter deal and if I was Bill Belichick, I’d oblige, with Sanders’ addition helping them instantly in a time of need.
Broncos get: 2021 5th round pick (NE)
Patriots get: Emmanuel Sanders
Stefon Diggs gets his wish
LAST week Kirk Cousins found his mojo as the Vikings compiled nearly 500 yards of offense, including a season-high 279 passing yards. More games like that will keep people from questions Cousins’ perplexing season, but everyone was focusing on the fact that Stefon Diggs only accounted for 44 of those yards. After a week in which the wide receiver was hit with over $200k in fines from the Vikings and winked after he was asked if he wanted to stay with the team, it’s fair to say Diggs’ behaviour is raising eyebrows. Minnesota’s passing chops hit against the Giants, but their receiving core isn’t great, so throwing in second-year pro Dante Pettis could push a trade over the line. For San Fransisco, their undefeated start to the season hasn’t exactly come against world-beaters, but posting a league-best 200 rushing yards per game has propelled them this far. I all to often say if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, but it’d be nice to have an alternative to lean on should opposing defenses halt their running game.
49ers get: Stefon Diggs
Vikings get: Dante Pettis, 2020 4th round pick (SF)
Cleveland gets the OL help they desperately need
CURRENTLY, Baker Mayfield’s 2019 completion percentage is worse than Cam Newton’s. If you haven’t been following Sunday’s as closely as me, that’s good for second-worst in the league (55.9%) behind Josh Rosen, who tends to crap his pants when dropping back. All of a sudden, the Browns have gone from preseason media darlings to a football team with a losing record. Giving their gunslinging play-caller time to find Odell Beckham or create gaps for Nick Chubb to burst through has got to be their top priority over the next month. Trent Williams is the sole player holding out for a contract extension now that Melvin Gordon and Ezekiel Elliott are suiting up and suitors are quickly starting to emerge for the impressive lineman. Washington doesn’t really want to part ways with a blue-chip tackle, but getting a top-32 selection in return will soften the blow.
Browns get: Trent Williams, 2021 4th round pick (WAS)
Redskins get: 2020 1st round pick (CLE), 2020 3rd round pick (CLE)
Banner from cincyjungle.com
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