The annual NFL trade deadline has come and gone, and not much of anything happened this year. In the past, there has been considerable amounts of action and often controversy about the trade deadline, but not this year. Perhaps everyone’s minds were elsewhere.
The NFL Trade Deadline Was Dead
Blame the lack of action on the COVID-19 pandemic, the shortened NFL season or perhaps on the uncertainty over the November elections, which took place on the same day as the trade deadline this year. After all the trash talk and rumors, two good football players, cornerback Stephon Gilmore of the New England Patriots and Houston Texans wide receiver Will Fuller, have decided to stay put with their current teams.
There were some pretty significant trades which took place in the days and weeks before the November trade deadline as teams filled in for all the first-string players that are now pacing the sidelines on the injured reserve list. Running back DeAndre Washington got squeezed out of the Kansas City Chiefs lineup by Le’Veon Bell and Clyde Edwards-Helaire, the Chiefs’ first-round draft pick. Washington was traded to the Miami Dolphins, who could use a little more depth in their backfield.
The Dolphins then sent wide receiver Isaiah Ford to the Patriots and the LA Chargers traded cornerback Desmond King to the Tennessee Titans for a future draft pick. Isaiah Ford may be a long shot to find a permanent place on the Patriots roster but, right now, New England is short on receivers and willing to take the chance on Ford.
The Saints Look To Improve On Defense
The New Orleans Saints traded linebacker Kiko Alonso to the San Francisco 49ers for linebacker Kwon Alexander, who has been on the sidelines for the last three games with an ankle injury. Alexander is supposed to be all healed up and ready to go and the Saints could surely use another good pass rusher to back up Cam Jordan.
The New York Jets have traded linebacker Avery Williamson to the Pittsburgh Steelers for a future draft pick. This is a big break for Williamson, who now moves on from a 0-8 winless team going nowhere to a 7-0 undefeated team that stands a great chance of ending up in the Super Bowl this year.
The Seattle Seahawks have swapped offensive lineman B.J. Finney with the Cincinnati Bengals for defensive end Carlos Dunlap. The Bengals are shoring up their offensive line to help protect their new star quarterback Joe Burrow who has inspired new hope in the floundering Cincinnati football team.
Lions, Giants And Cardinals Boost Their Defenses
The Detroit Lions get defensive end Everson Griffen from the Dallas Cowboys for a future draft pick to fill in for the injured Trey Flowers. While that deal was going on, the New York Giants sent OLB Markus Golden, who played with the Arizona Cardinals from 2015-2018, back to the Cardinals, also for a future draft pick after their excellent pass rusher Chandler Jones suffered a season ending biceps injury.
Finally, the Minnesota Vikings traded defensive end Yannick Ngakoue to the Baltimore Ravens for a third round draft pick this year and a fifth round pick in 2022. The Ravens get a much needed pass rusher for next to nothing. The Vikings gave up second and fifth round picks to get Yannick Ngakoue just a few months ago.
Fortunately for both the players involved and the NFL, none of the current injuries seem to be serious enough to do any lasting damage. Painful for sure, but not too serious. These guys are young and in peak physical condition. They will heal up and be back on the playing field sooner than you think.