NFL Draft Preview: Potential Trade Scenarios
49ers Trade Back from No. 2: Rumors have circulated that San Francisco is "antsy" for a trade back.
New General Manager John Lynch and the Niners have the No. 2 slot in the draft and have a need at nearly every position, making a trade down likely. The question is, who would be willing to do that in such a weak quarterback class? No quarterback currently warrants a selection at the No. 2 spot and if one did, the needy 49ers would take him.
This trade could be similar to Cleveland’s back in 2013, when they traded the fifth overall pick for the 17th overall pick and a second round pick.
Perhaps the Panthers make a move up from No. 8 to grab Solomon Thomas; or maybe the Saints move up to grab Marshon Lattimore in exchange for their No. 11 and No. 32 picks.
Patriots Get Back into the First Round: The Patriots have had a splashy offseason thus far, but do not have many picks in the upcoming draft. What they do have, however, is a recently tendered Malcolm Butler and backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo who could command major draft capital in a trade.
Butler is still expected to be traded and a team who misses out on their favorite cornerback prospect could pull the trigger on deal. Garoppolo is a hot commodity because of the lack of quarterback talent in the draft and a desperate team could offer up a package the Patriots may not be able to refuse.
The Browns would probably love to swap their No. 12 selection for Garoppolo. The Texans could offer up their No. 25 pick and their first round pick next season.
Texans Trade Up for a QB: If the Texans fail to convince the Patriots to give up Garoppolo, expect them to trade up to gamble on a rookie quarterback.
Bill O’Brien and Co. have done their due diligence in scouting the three or four NFL caliber talents in this draft and may have developed a favorite. Rather than waiting back and seeing their favorite signal caller taken in front of them, Houston should try to be aggressive and trade up to the early teens to take someone like DeShaun Watson or Patrick Mahomes.
The Texans are a solid quarterback away from contending for a championship. If they hit on a good one in this draft, they could become Super Bowl contenders.
Jets Trade Sheldon Richardson: Sheldon Richardson has been on the trade block for a while and draft day seems like a perfect time for his departure.
Richardson is a former Pro Bowler and Defensive Rookie of the Year who has lost his way a little bit amidst a crowded defensive line rotation. A smart team would love to take a gamble on the defensive end regaining his Pro Bowl form since he is still only 26 years old, and the Jets have been rumored to want to move from their No. 6 draft slot.
Whether they move forward or backward, Richardson will likely be dangled as a trade sweetener. They could use him to help trade up to the 49ers' No. 2 slot, or use him as a throw in to try and extract a few more picks from a potential trade partner.
Titans Trade Back: Tennessee has ample ammunition in the first round – No. 5 and No. 18 – after fleecing the Rams in a trade last year for QB Jared Goff.
They have big needs at cornerback and wide receiver, but if Marshon Lattimore is not sitting there at No. 5, expect the Titans to trade back and collect even more picks.
The Titans apparently are not very high on this draft class and would rather trade down to collect some picks in next year’s draft. If Tennessee trades out of the No. 5 slot, they could still come away with two big-time playmakers in the middle of the round, while also brightening their outlook for next offseason.
The Titans have been making all the right moves lately and could become a Super Bowl contender if they find a few impact players in this draft.