The first domino of this year’s NFL offseason fell on Saturday night when the Detroit Lions traded Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams.
In agreeing to give up two first rounders, a third rounder and Jared Goff for Stafford, LA set the value floor for a high-quality quarterback. The natural follow-up question quickly became: what does this mean for the likes of Deshaun Watson and Aaron Rodgers?
Watson has been the subject of much trade speculation over the past few weeks. Two teams have been viewed as very serious contenders to acquire him, with three sleeper squads also in the running.
Rodgers, meanwhile, became the subject of trade chatter following his team’s loss in the NFC Championship Game last week. Six teams quickly emerged as potential suitors for his services.
In response to all the trade talk surrounding both Watson and Rodgers, ESPN NFL insider Bill Barnwell suggested a massive four-team deal that could completely reshape the make-up of the league.
The transaction in question would involve four teams: the Houston Texans, Green Bay Packers, San Francisco 49ers and New England Patriots.
In this deal, the Packers would acquire Watson (from Houston) and a 2022 second-round pick (from San Francisco).
The Niners, meanwhile, would receive Rodgers (from Green Bay), the 142nd overall pick in 2021 (from New England) and a 2022 fourth-round pick (from Houston).
On the other side, the Texans would get Jordan Love (from Green Bay), the 12th overall pick in 2021 (from San Francisco), 30th overall pick in 2021 (from Green Bay) and 2022 first-round pick (from San Francisco).
Finally, the Patriots would land Jimmy Garoppolo (from San Francisco), who has clearly been on the outs with his current organization.
Patrick Mahomes’ lame brother tried to steal someone’s girlfriend and learned a valuable lesson in the process.https://t.co/OK7Nh5SMdR
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 28, 2021
This would be a clear win-win-win-win for all parties involved.
Green Bay would trade away arguably the best quarterback in the NFL today for the most promising one.
San Francisco nabs a top-tier quarterback to pair with its otherwise Super Bowl-ready roster.
Now we know what motivates Gronk to play so hard. https://t.co/xFnKnjoXQ4
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 24, 2021
Houston gets a promising young prospect and a bevy of draft capital in return for a quarterback who desperately wants out and has left them with virtually zero leverage.
New England upgrades at quarterback by adding a passer familiar with how the franchise does things, presumably putting an end to all the ridicule Bill Belichick has been receiving from opposing teams.
Obviously when trades feature such an extreme level of star power and so many big names the likelihood of failure is higher than usual. But presuming everyone could keep it together long enough to make the deal work, this could be a rare occasion when everyone involved comes out a winner.
A longtime sports reporter, Carlos Garcia has written about some of the biggest and most notable athletic events of the last 5 years. He has been credentialed to cover MLS, NBA and MLB games all over the United States. His work has been published on Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, AOL and the Washington Post.