What Would a Trade for Deshaun Watson Even Look Like? – The Ringer

Recently, Houston moved on from a renowned gamer. Unfortunately for Deshaun Watson, it wasnt him. James Harden might have left his unfavorable circumstance with the Rockets, however Watson appears to be stuck to the Texans, at least for the time being. And as the Texans enter another offseason lacking clear direction and falling under increased examination, the possibility of Watson forcing his escape continues to be a subject of NFL discussion.
When Watson inked a four-year, $160 million deal in September, it was met with plenty of appreciation. Watson, a former no. 12 pick, delivered the finest season of his profession, emerging as one of the NFLs best signal-callers this year. On Sunday morning, ESPNs Adam Schefter reported that the Texans are beginning to sense that Watson has played his final snap with the group:

There is a growing sense from individuals in and around the Texans organization that Deshaun Watson has played his last snap for the team. Its early in the off-season, theres a great deal of time left, but Watsons sensations can not and should not be ignored.– Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 17, 2021

Stress between Watson and the Texans has been constructing considering that even before this season. Houston has made a routine of not including its franchise QB on franchise-altering choices; Watson hadnt been warned ahead of Houstons jettisoning of DeAndre Hopkins, his no. 1 target, last offseason. Back in November, Watson satisfied with Texans CEO Cal McNair to deal with that. During the conference, McNair supposedly suggested he would think about Watsons input on the groups next steps. Rather, McNair hired Nick Caserio, the Patriots director of player personnel, overlooking a search companys recommendations and Watsons suggestions. ESPNs Adam Schefter reported the employing procedure pressed Watsons frustration to “a 10.” Watson apparently has actually promoted Houston to consider working with Chiefs offensive organizer Eric Bieniemy, whom the Texans did not ask for an interview with until Tuesday, for its head-coaching job. That suggests Houston missed a possibility to meet Bieniemy during Kansas Citys wild-card bye and will have to wait till the Chiefs are out of the playoffs, which could be a while. In the meantime, each of the other five groups with a head-coach opening after Black Monday currently spoke with Bieniemy.
The Texans lag the eight ball once again. Their list of missteps is long, and their lineup mismanagement is well-documented. In 2019, general manager Brian Gaine was fired roughly a year and a half after changing Rick Smith. Head coach Bill OBrien was made de facto GM following Gaines ousting, and in a years period, he traded Jadeveon Clowney for a third-round pick and 2 players; traded a plan consisting of two first-round picks for deal with Laremy Tunsil without having actually accepted an agreement extension with him prior; and traded away All-Pro receiver DeAndre Hopkins for running back David Johnson and change.
In October 2017– a few weeks after President Donald Trump took public goal at NFL players for protesting during the national anthem– Texans owner Bob McNair reportedly described gamers as “inmates running the prison” during a meeting in between NFL owners, team executives, and players union agents. In November, Houston fired Amy Palcic, the Texans VP of interactions, stating that she wasnt “a cultural fit” even though reaction from around the league suggests shes clearly considered highly by her peers. Easterby, who has a close relationship with McNair and was greatly included in the decision to work with Caserio, appears to be keeping his job, and Watson “just wants out,” a person close to Watson told Sports Illustrated.
The three-time Defensive Player of the Year has actually been outspoken in describing how much losing “sucks” for Texans players and fans. Watt even asked forgiveness to Watson for Houstons 4-12 surface, informing the QB “we squandered one of your years” following a 41-38 loss to Tennessee in the Texans season ending:

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The 49ers quit 3 first-round choices to get Plunkett, who won 11 video games across 2 seasons before leaving after the 1978 season. This deal feels somewhat similar to the Cutler trade; Plunkett was a young star passer who d been picked no. 1 in the 1971 draft. Nevertheless, Plunkett had not been as successful; Plunkett completed simply 48.5 percent of his passes, balanced 3.6 changed net yards per effort, and tossed an interception on 5.8 percent of his efforts throughout his five seasons with New England. Watson is quickly worth a similar haul when considering his production if Plunkett might command 3 first-round choices and a veteran QB in return at that point in his career.
March 7, 1967: Vikings trade QB Fran Tarkenton to Giants in exchange for a 1967 first-round pick (no. 2) and a 1967 second-round pick, a 1968 first-round pick (no. 1), and a 1969 second-round pick.
January 27, 1972: Giants trade QB Fran Tarkenton to Vikings in exchange for QB Norm Snead, WR Bob Grim, FB Vince Clements, a 1972 first-round pick (no. 24), and a 1973 second-round pick.
Perhaps no QB has actually triggered more draft capital to be swapped in between 2 teams than Tarkenton, whom Minnesota initially dealt in 1967 because of a rift between the young star passer and HC Norm Van Brocklin. In between the two offers, a total of six draft choices were exchanged, consisting of 3 first-round options. Still, it feels like you d have to put both of these trades together to approach the worth that Watson brings today.
May 26, 1958: The Rams trade QB Norm Van Brocklin to the Eagles in exchange for the no. 2 choice, OT Buck Lansford, and DB Jimmy Harris.
Before Van Brocklin came to power in Minnesota, he was the Rams QB. In 1958, the then-32-year-old signal-caller was delivered to Philadelphia in exchange for a no. 2 pick– which was utilized to prepare a fullback– and a pair of veterans. He made 3 straight Pro Bowls and was called league MVP during his Eagles period.
October 6, 1958: Lions trade QB Bobby Layne to Steelers in exchange for QB Earl Morrall, 2 undisclosed draft picks.
The Lions were the defending NFL champs when they traded Layne to the Steelers in 1958 for QB Earl Morrall and a set of draft picks. The quote was never ever released, however Layne allegedly stated the Lions would “not win for 50 years” after he was traded. Considering Detroit hasnt won a championship since then, the “Curse of Bobby Layne” does not sound as fictitious as one may initially believe. Fortunately for the Texans, Watson has a no-trade clause in his contract, so he will not be moved anywhere he does not wish to be. Perhaps itll save them from Watson cursing their franchise for 50 years like Layne did to Detroit.
Throughout NFL history, there are plenty of examples of franchise players who were traded, either since they became dissatisfied with their present circumstances or since their team remarkably decided to move on. Watson is amongst the most empowered gamers weve ever seen, and he has the ability to press for a move. While he hasnt officially sent a request to leave, trading him isnt difficult– but the Texans sure would expect to get a lot for him.
Only a handful of groups can even theoretically pony up enough to acquire Watson. The Dolphins stand as the most logical of them, boasting the no. 3 choice (really the Texans own, traded to Miami as part of the Tunsil offer) and the no. 18 choice in the 2021 NFL draft. PFFs Cole and Spielberger have suggested the Dolphins package those choices, their 2022 first-round choice, and quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, last years no. 5 pick who was called Miamis starter midseason but split and had a hard time with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, for Watson. The Jets are thought about the second-best alternative, touting this years nos. 2 and 23 choices, a 2022 first-round pick, and QB Sam Darnold. The concept is that with Darnold in tow, Houston might trade the no. 2 choice for extra draft compensation from another team, and then utilize those picks to inject its cash-strapped lineup with inexpensive, young skill.
Any of those deals coming to fruition presently seems like a pipe dream. Rather, teams will likely have to wait to have a sensible shot at signing Watson after his existing offer expires in 2026, when hell be 30 years old. According to Spotrac, theres likewise a possible out for the Texans in 2024. If Watson were to be moved in the past then, it would take significantly large compensation like the deals mentioned above. It may even take the greatest offer in NFL history.

The Texans company is understood for squandering players professions. Pitiful!!!– Andre Johnson (@johnson80) January 12, 2021

Previous Texans running back Arian Foster also chimed in, keeping in mind that Johnson wouldnt “get this outta pocket” without something suspicious going on behind the scenes. Johnson met up with Watson on Tuesday night at a Rockets-Lakers game, snapped an image, and shared it on Instagram with an all-caps caption: “STAND YOUR GROUND!!!”.
It would appear that Watson has every factor to desire out. But the Texans also have every reason to wish to keep him. Watson is coming off a career year, and for a team doing not have in assets and in an unpleasant cap situation, Watson is the brightest beacon of hope.
Since Thursday, there have not been reports of Watson asking for a trade, though Pro Football Talks Mike Florio recently reported that Watson has at least “silently broached with colleagues the possibility of asking for a trade.” Watson, 25, is a franchise QB who signed an extension less than 5 months back and is just entering his prime. Trading such a player would be an anomaly. Recently, Pro Football Focuss Brad Spielberger and Kevin Cole checked out reasonable trade possibilities, and each of their leading 4 hypothetical circumstances included a minimum of 3 top-35 choices being sent out to Houston in exchange for Watson. History recommends the asking rate might– and need to– be even higher. To get a sense of what it would take to trade for Watson, here are a few of the largest trades in league history:.
July 25, 2020: The Jets trade S Jamal Adams and a 2022 fourth-round pick to the Seahawks in exchange for a 2021 first-round pick, a 2021 third-round pick, a 2022 first-round choice, and S Bradley McDougald.
Due to the fact that its the most current blockbuster trade weve seen in the NFL, were including the Adams offer. One season into the transaction, it looks like the Jets got the better deal, nabbing two first-round choices and a starting-caliber safety (though McDougald played in just 7 video games in 2020 due to the fact that of a shoulder injury, and is most likely to move on after this year as an unlimited free representative), while Adams overcame injuries (hell go through surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder and 2 broken fingers during the offseason) to make his third-consecutive Pro Bowl election. If it took 2 first-round choices to land a box security like Adams– who still hasnt worked out a brand-new contract; his existing offer will be up in 2022– then the haul for a franchise QB entering his prime would be considerably larger.
April 20, 2016: The Browns trade the no. 2 pick (QB Carson Wentz) and a 2017 fourth-round choice to the Eagles in exchange for a 2016 first-round pick (no. 8), a 2016 third-round pick, a 2016 fourth-round choice, a 2017 first-round pick, and a 2018 second-round pick.
April 14, 2016: The Titans trade the no. 1 pick (QB Jared Goff), a 2016 fourth-round choice, and a 2016 sixth-round choice to the Rams for a 2016 first-round choice (no. 15), 2 2016 second-round picks, a 2016 third-round pick, a 2017 first-round choice, and a 2017 third-round pick.
These draft-pick offers made it possible for both the Rams and Eagles to pick their franchise QBs of the future, and the deals set a precedent for compensation needed by a QB-needy team to go up in the draft. These deals were for players who had not yet played a breeze in the NFL. Neither Goff nor Wentz was even related to as an instant franchise-changer like, state, an Andrew Luck. Thinking about that Watson has shown himself capable of playing at a regularly high level, the compensation for a qualified starter like him need to be even higher.
March 9, 2012: The Rams trade the no. 2 pick (QB Robert Griffin III) to Washington in exchange for the no. 6 pick, a 2012 second-round pick, a 2013 first-round pick, and a 2014 first-round choice.
Another example of a group dumping several first-round choices to pick its novice signal-caller of choice, Washington leapt four spots to get Griffin. The former Baylor star was highly related to, which enticed Washington to make the enthusiastic move to obtain him. This deal assisted set a precedent for what it would consider a group to aggressively pursue a rookie passer who wasnt yet a proven commodity like Watson is.
April 2, 2009: The Broncos trade QB Jay Cutler to the Bears in exchange for QB Kyle Orton, a 2009 first-round pick (18th), a 2009 third-round choice, and a 2010 first-round pick.
Cutler was the same age as Watson currently is (25) and was coming off a Pro Bowl season in which he d thrown for 4,526 yards in Denver. Cutler asked for a trade that offseason, and the Broncos moved him to Chicago in exchange for a set of first-round picks, Kyle Orton, and a third-rounder. While Cutler never ever lived up to the buzz in Chicago, Watson appears to be deserving of a financial investment that is even bigger than this deal.
April 17, 1999: Washington trades the no. 5 choice (Ricky Williams) to the Saints in exchange for a 1999 first-round choice, a 1999 third-round pick, a 1999 fourth-round choice, a 1999 fifth-round choice, a 1999 sixth-round pick, and a 1999 seventh-round choice, plus a 2000 first-round choice and a 2000 third-round pick.
In the past, running backs were valued much differently than they are now. Mike Ditka raided the Saints cabinets of draft choices and offered actually his entire draft– plus some future picks– to acquire Williams, who lasted 3 seasons in New Orleans prior to joining the Dolphins; Ditka was fired after the 1999 season.
October 12, 1989: The Cowboys trade RB Herschel Walker to the Vikings in exchange for POUND Jesse Solomon, LB David Howard, CB Issiac Holt, DE Alex Stewart, RB Darrin Nelson, a 1990 first-round choice, a 1990 second-round pick, a 1990 sixth-round choice, a 1991 first-round pick, a 1991 second-round choice, a 1992 second-round pick, a 1992 third-round pick, and a 1993 first-round choice.
The Cowboys received five gamers in addition to three first-round picks and 3 second-round choices just for Herschel Walker. 3 first-round choices and three second-round choices might seem hefty, however if Watson sustains his present level of play, he might end up as one of the best QBs of his period.
April 6, 1976: The Patriots trade QB Jim Plunkett to the 49ers in exchange for QB Tom Owen, 2 1976 first-round choices (nos. 12 and 21), a 1977 first-round pick, and a 1977 second-round choice.

One can just picture how aggravating things have been for Watson. Previous Houston star receiver Andre Johnson sees the writing on the wall, and tweeted that Watson must stand his ground. “The Texans organization is understood for squandering players (sic) professions,” he composed.

Head coach Bill OBrien was made de facto GM following Gaines ousting, and in a years period, he traded Jadeveon Clowney for a third-round pick and two players; traded a package consisting of two first-round picks for tackle Laremy Tunsil without having agreed to a contract extension with him prior; and traded away All-Pro receiver DeAndre Hopkins for running back David Johnson and change.
Three first-round picks and three second-round choices may seem large, however if Watson sustains his current level of play, he might complete as one of the best QBs of his period.
The Dolphins stand as the most logical of them, boasting the no. 3 pick (actually the Texans own, traded to Miami as part of the Tunsil offer) and the no. 18 choice in the 2021 NFL draft. PFFs Cole and Spielberger have actually recommended the Dolphins plan those choices, their 2022 first-round choice, and quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, last years no. 5 pick who was named Miamis starter midseason but struggled and split time with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, for Watson. The idea is that with Darnold in tow, Houston might trade the no. 2 pick for additional draft compensation from another team, and then utilize those picks to inject its cash-strapped roster with low-cost, young talent.

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