Photo via Rick Osentoski/AP Photo
The trade deadline has come and passed. The day was disappointing and lacked any significant trades, but the week or so before the deadline, there was plenty of action. Here’s a look at the major trades that occurred in the last eight days of the trade season.
Monday, October 21
The Oakland Raiders trade CB Gareon Conley to the Houston Texans for a third-round pick.
This move needed to be made for the Oakland Raiders. While the Raiders have had some success this season, they are still at best, a mediocre team. They need as many draft picks as possible to build up their young core for the future. But the main reason is Conley has struggled to be their number one corner, especially in their last game at Green Bay as Aaron Rodgers had a perfect quarterback rating without his top wide receiver.
The Texans are 29th in pass defense, and this addition will help with some of their secondary woes and should work with Texans’ defensive coordinator to help improve his 2019 season. Conley’s first chance to show out will be against his former team, the Raiders. This is the second straight season the Texans trade for a player from the same team their next opponent is against as last year, the Broncos took on the Texans a week after trading wide receiver to Houston. And like last year, the Texans won the match-up as they beat the Raiders 27-24.
Tuesday, October 22
The Atlanta Falcons trade WR Mohamed Sanu to the New England Patriots for a second-round pick.
The Falcons this season have been a disaster. They are 1-7, they have the worst defense in the NFL, and they are looking like they are about to blow it up and start over. This trade was the first sign of this as they let long-time number two receiver Sanu go for the second-round pick. The Falcons need to move on for the future and getting a second-round pick is a nice draft piece to have. As for the Patriots, receiver Josh Gordon was placed on IR and Sanu is a great replacement. Sanu’s previous two years were his best and he’ll join a juggernaut in the Patriots, who have fellow Rutgers’ alumni such as Jason and Devin McCourty, and Duron Harmon.
The Denver Broncos trade WR Emmanuel Sanders and a fifth-round pick to the San Francisco 49ers for a third and fourth-round pick
The Broncos are rebuilding, and Sanders is a good wide receiver nearing the end of his prime. Denver was no longer a good situation for him. With Courtland Sutton emerging as a number one receiver, the perfect move was to trade him for valuable draft capital, which a third and fourth is solid but not fantastic. The 49ers currently sit at 7-0, but their offense has mainly been carried by the NFL’s second-best rushing offense. Their weakness so far is a bottom ten passing offense, and it will pick up as Sanders is a speedy and reliable receiver that should fit well in Kyle Shanahan’s quick offense and open things up for stud tight end George Kittle. In Sanders’ first game with the 49ers, he caught a touchdown pass in the first quarter of their 51-13 win over the Carolina Panthers.
The Detroit Lions trade CB Quandre Diggs and a 2021 seventh-round pick to the Seattle Seahawks for a 2020 fifth-round pick.
The Seattle Seahawks need all the secondary help they can get as their defense has been up and down this season and is putting too much pressure on Russell Wilson to be a great team. So, adding secondary help will be a nice boost to this team. But for Detroit, their pass defense is weak but trading Diggs makes no sense. He’s a reliable and explosive corner who can also make an impact on special teams. Also, while the Raiders are rebuilding and got a nice draft pick for Conley, the Lions aren’t rebuilding, and the pick is average at best. Also, this angers the top corner and a leader, Darius Slay, who voiced his frustrations over Twitter and interviews, and this is something Matt Patricia cannot have. The Lions are trying to get back into the playoff race after this Sunday’s win over the New York Giants, and having these distractions and worsening their secondary may not help matters. In fact, Daniel Jones despite the loss threw for over 350 yards and torched the Lions defense.
Monday, October 28
The Miami Dolphins trade Kenyan Drake to the Arizona Cardinals for a sixth-round pick that could turn into a fifth.
The Miami Dolphins continue to sell off their starters and sent the one responsible for “The Miami Miracle” and their last victory, Kenyan Drake to the Arizona Cardinals. Mark Walton has been a solid option for the Dolphins and Drake has had very little role in this tanking Dolphins team. While the pick isn’t a high pick, the Dolphins can use every draft pick for the future they can get. For the Cardinals, this pick was needed. Emerging running back Chase Edmonds, who had three rushing touchdowns in a 27-21 win at the New York Giants, injured his hamstring and he will miss a “few weeks”, and David Johnson still missing action with an ankle injury, are out and the Cardinals are in need of running back depth. This will help the Cardinals have a decent running back when they take on the undefeated 49ers on Halloween Night and will provide plenty of depth going forward at the position. Kliff Kingsbury should be able to use his explosiveness to aid the young offense anchored by Kyler Murray.
The New York Jets trade Leonard Williams to the New York Giants for a third-round pick in 2020 and a fifth-round pick in 2021
This is the first-ever trade between the Jets and Giants, and luckily for Leonard Williams, he will not have to move cities. This is a weird trade for the Giants as they are rebuilding and need all the draft picks they can get to continue to build their future core around Daniel Jones. However, Leonard Williams is a player with still some room to improve and the Giants’ historically speaking, thrive on pass rushers with the likes of Lawrence Taylor, Michael Strahan, Jim Burt, etc., and they are hoping Williams can bolster a pass rush that ranks 12th currently in sacks. As for the Jets, it makes perfect sense. Williams wasn’t producing what they had hoped, and the Jets need all the draft picks they can get. A third and fifth is a pretty good return for a struggling defensive lineman.