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As NFL free agency winds down, most fans and pundits have turned to Nashville, Tennessee, and the 2019 NFL draft.
And potential trades during April 25's first round are always a big talking point. Last year, no fewer than half the picks in the top 10 changed hands at some point. We've already seen the New York Giants add an extra first-rounder by dealing wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. The Oakland Raiders picked up two during last year's fire sale.
Do a quick Google search and you'll find enough articles about draft-day trades to keep you busy right up until NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell takes the stage in a few weeks amid a cacophony of boos.
However, possible trades and plausible trades are two different things. This isn't to say that an unforseen jaw-dropper is an impossibility, but usually when a trade goes down, it's not hard to connect the dots on how the swap made sense for both sides.
These half-dozen trades meet that criteria. And while it's possible none happen, don't be surprised if more than one does.
Arizona Cardinals Get: Round 1 pick (15th overall)
Washington Redskins Get: QB Josh Rosen
It's not a state secret that the Arizona Cardinals are interested in taking Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray with the first overall pick.
It's also not a secret that if the Redbirds take Murray at No. 1, then Josh Rosen's days with the team are numbered. As Chuck Harris wrote for Cards Wire, the Cardinals should (in theory) dig in and demand a first-round pick for Rosen:
"When you consider the capital used to draft Rosen, where analysts rank him among quarterback prospects last year and this year, the dysfunction that was the 2018 season, cap implications and the opportunity cost of drafting back to back quarterbacks, the answer is clear. Arizona taking anything less than a first-round pick for Rosen would be a mistake."
Now, as things stand, the potential Rosen suitors are balking at the notion of offering up a Day 1 pick, per NBC Sports' Peter King. That's understandable—the draft is still two full weeks away, so it's a buyer's market.
However, as draft day nears, there's one team in particular that might pony up the pick the Cardinals are asking for.
With Alex Smith's NFL future about as cloudy as it gets, there's more than a little uncertainty around the quarterback position in the nation's capital. Case Keenum is at best a short-term Band-Aid.
By the time the Redskins go on the clock at No. 15, it's possible Murray, Ohio State's Dwayne Haskins and Missouri's Drew Lock will all be off the board. If that's the case, dealing the pick for last year's 10th overall selection could start making a lot more sense.
Oakland Raiders Get: Round 1 pick (No. 1 overall)
Arizona Cardinals Get: Round 1 pick (No. 4 overall), Round 1 pick (No. 24 overall), Round 2 pick (No. 35 overall)
There's another possibility for the Cardinals at No. 1: trading down. It wouldn't bring in the 2018 Heisman Trophy winner, Murray, but it would get the team a windfall of selections that could be used to rebuild a roster that's problems run deeper than just quarterback.
There's no team better equipped to make a Day 1 move up than the Oakland Raiders. In part via the trades of Amari Cooper and Khalil Mack, the Raiders are sitting on three first-round picks: No. 4, No. 24 and No. 27.
The Raiders have met with Murray, and Arizona head coach Kliff Kingsbury said on his podcast (via Jess Root of Cards Wire) that at a recent clinic for high school coaches, Oakland head coach Jon Gruden flat-out asked if Arizona was set on drafting Murray first overall—though it may have been at least partly in jest.
"He asked the toughest question of the day," Kingsbury said. "He asked if we were going to take a certain quarterback from Oklahoma."
Hornets Charlotte Hockey Jersey Jersey Hornets Charlotte At No. 4, the Cardinals could add an impact pass-rusher such as Michigan's Rashan Gary or Mississippi State's Montez Sweat, or they could have their choice of any of this year's quarterbacks in the non-Murray division. At No. 24, an offensive starter to help whoever's under center would be available.
And while Oakland might be reluctant to part with all three first-rounders in a move up, getting the third pick of Round 2 would give Arizona four selections in the top 35.Nfl Anniversary Gold Pittsburgh Antonio Hoodie 100th Steelers Brown
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Denver Broncos Get: Round 1 pick (No. 3 overall)
New York Jets Get: Round 1 pick (No. 10 overall), 2020 Round 1 pick
For several years, Denver Broncos general manager John Elway has tried to find a quarterback to lead the franchise.
And for several years, whether it was youngsters such as Paxton Lynch and Brock Osweiler or veterans such as Case Keenum, Elway has failed.
In the offseason, Elway went the veteran route again, swinging a trade that brought Super Bowl XLVII MVP Joe Flacco to the Mile High City. But even in a best-case scenario, the 34-year-old Flacco is a short-term fix.
Per Mark Kiszla and Ryan O' Halloran of the Hornets Charlotte Hockey Jersey Jersey Hornets Charlotte Denver Post, buzz has been growing that Elway is a fan of Missouri quarterback Drew Lock.
"Elway was at the Arkansas-Missouri game in November," O'Halloran wrote. "Elway was at the Senior Bowl practices for three days and barely left the quarterback group. I believe the Broncos are targeting multiple quarterbacks (as they should) and Lock is probably one of them (as he should be)."
If Elway really is taken with Lock, it may require a move up to secure his services. While appearing on The Rich Eisen Show, Bleacher Report NFL Draft National Lead Writer Matt Miller indicated that he thinks Lock could be the second quarterback drafted and a top-five pick overall.
It's been known for weeks that the New York Jets are open for business at No. 3. The cost would be steep—and a price that could mean the end of Elway's tenure if Lock doesn't pan out.
But if the Broncos believe Lock is the future, it makes sense to go get him.
New York Giants Get: Round 1 pick (No. 9 overall)
Buffalo Bills Get: Round 1 pick (No. 17 overall), Round 3 pick (No. 95 overall), Round 4 pick (No. 108 overall), Round 4 pick (No. 132 overall)
For much of the predraft lead-up, the general belief was the New York Giants would use the sixth overall pick on a quarterback—likely Haskins.
However, as John Healy reported for SNY, Giants general manager Dave Gettleman said he won't force a quarterback at that (or any other) spot.
"If you make something a priority, you will make a mistake," he said. "It's got to be within the flow of what you're doing. You can't force it. Especially at quarterback. ... When you get to the draft you're taking the best player. You're not taking I need 'a' so I'm taking 'a.' No. You do that you'll make a mistake and you'll screw it up."
Still, there's a way the Giants could have their proverbial cake and eat it.
A pair of teams (the Jacksonville Jaguars and Detroit Lions) who don't appear to have a glaring need under center follow the Giants in the draft order. It's well within the realm of reason that Haskins will still be on the board at No. 9.
After the Denver Broncos pick at No. 10 (if the Broncos pick at No. 10), it could be a different story altogether.
Last year, moving up from No. 15 to No. 10 cost the Arizona Cardinals a third-rounder and a fifth-rounder.
For a better haul on Days 2 and 3, the Giants could theoretically go with the best player available at No. 6 and still circle back for a quarterback a few picks later.
Kansas City Chiefs Get: Round 1 pick (No. 17 overall)
New York Giants Get: Round 1 pick (No. 29 overall), Round 2 pick (No. 63 overall), Round 3 pick (No. 92 overall)
There's a reason the New York Giants and Oakland Raiders are mentioned so much. As the only two teams in this year's draft with multiple picks in the top 25, the Giants and Raiders are positioned to be players on April 25.
We've already laid out a scenario in which the G-Men get aggressive and make a move up in Round 1. But what if the Giants decide that building for the future is more important than living in the here and now? That with so many holes to fill on both sides of the ball, stockpiling picks is the way to go?
If the Giants look to trade back, the team can probably find a willing partner in the defending AFC West champions.
The Kansas City Chiefs are in "win now" mode after they came up just short of a Super Bowl LIII berth. Still, their secondary is a hot mess—only the Cincinnati Bengals allowed more passing yards per game in 2018.
Trading up from No. 29 to No. 17 would be an expensive bump—per the trade value chartBlank Seahawks Blank Jersey Seahawks Jersey Blank Seahawks Jersey, such a move would cost the Chiefs a pair of Day 2 picks in addition to that 29th selection.Seahawks Sale Jersey Seahawks Jersey Womens Sale Womens
But the opportunity to snag one of the 2019 draft's best cover corners—perhaps LSU's Greedy Williams or Georgia's Deandre Baker—makes it a sensible move for both sides.
Hornets Charlotte Hockey Jersey Jersey Hornets Charlotte Green Bay Packers Get:Round 3 pick (No. 73 overall)
New England Patriots Get: TE Jimmy Graham
Plenty of mock drafts have predicted the Green Bay Packers will use one of their two first-round picks to select a tight end. For Ryan Wilson of CBSSports.com, that pick is Iowa's T.J. Hockenson at No. 12 overall.
"Jimmy Graham isn't the player he once was," Wilson wrote, "and Hockenson, who has drawn comparisons to Rob Gronkowski, reminds us more of Travis Kelce. Either way, he's a legit target for Aaron Rodgers."
If the Pack do scoop up a tight end, the 32-year-old Graham would become expendable—especially if Hockenson (the most pro-ready of this year's tight ends) is the choice. And the Packers would be hard-pressed to find a better trading partner than the team that just watched Gronkowski retire.
The New England Patriots have never been even a little shy about making trades before and during the NFL draft. The Pats will trade up. The Pats will trade down. And as he's shown in two of the past three years, Bill Belichick isn't averse to making a deal to acquire a veteran tight end (Martellus Bennett, Dwayne Allen).
In a perfect world, the Patriots would be able to do this deal using their compensatory pick at the back of Round 3 (No. 101 overall). But even if it requires the earlier third, upgrading a shaky tight end corps (even after the addition of veteran Austin Seferian-Jenkins) would be worth it for the defending Super Bowl champions.
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Cleveland Browns Get: Round 4 pick (No. 138 overall)
Philadelphia Eagles Get: RB Duke Johnson, Round 6 pick (No. 189 overall)
Given that the Cleveland Browns picked up Kareem Hunt this offseason, it's no surprise that third-down back Duke Johnson requested a trade. The Philadelphia Eagles have been mentioned as one of the teams interested in the 25-year-old, despite their recent acquisition of Jordan Howard from the Chicago Bears.
ESPN's Adam Schefter said on a recent radio appearance in Philadelphia (h/t Jeff Kerr of 247 Sports) that no deal is imminent. But he didn't rule out something being worked out either before or during this year's draft:
"Nothing is really close right now. They also had discussions with the Bears with (Jordan Howard) for quite some time before they got the deal done. I don't know what the Eagles have offered the Browns for Duke Johnson, but maybe at some point and time either the Browns come to the realization that 'hey this is a pretty good offer from the Eagles' or the Eagles say 'we offered a mid-round pick and we'll go up a round or we'll go from this player to that player.'Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale Green-bay-packer-jerseys-wholesale
"Whatever it may be that sweetens the pot. So maybe the Browns want to get back, I'm making this up, a fourth-round pick. Maybe a four would get it done. Usually the timelines for these types of things are right before the draft...The (running back) position would be set if the Eagles could get something done for Duke Johnson."
A fourth-rounder would be a fair bit more than what the Eagles gave up to land Howard (2020 conditional sixth-rounder). But the two deals aren't in competition with one another, and as it happens, Philly has an extra selection in that round.
The Browns could (if needed) flip a late pick back to Philadelphia to sweeten the pot a touch in an era where tailbacks just don't fetch much on the trade market.
Pairing Howard and Johnson would give the Eagles an interesting thunder-and-lightning backfield.