Numerous reports this morning are saying that the Steelers intend to put this Antonio Brown fiasco to bed by Friday. This certainly makes sense as the NFL’s new year kicks off next Wednesday and the team will want to have time to put its ducks in a row following the shake up.
The teams most often linked to the mercurial wide receiver are the Tennessee Titans, and the Gruden brothers, Jay in Washington and John in Oakland. Just a few weeks ago it was believed that Pittsburgh was inclined to not trade him to an NFC team, for which only Washington fits that bill. It was then extended to AFC teams not in the AFC North, and not named the New England Patriots.
Tennessee is a potential AFC playoff team, or at least they’ve been a borderline (either way) playoff team the last couple of seasons. Out in Oakland its all about getting the product nice and shiny for the 2020 move to Las Vegas. Oakland certainly has the picks to toss around, but does it make sense to trade away Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper for those first rounders only to turn around and ship one to Pittsburgh for a disgruntled player who is older than both Mack and Cooper?
For today though, we’re going to put forth a hypothetical that has zero chance of happening, but should. You hardly ever see player for player trades in the NFL. Sure it happens on occasion. The biggest one I can think of off the top of my head was Champ Bailey for Clinton Portis. NFL trades tend to be for draft picks. You also hardly ever see multi player swaps. But just for today we’re going to pretend the NFL is like the NHL or NBA where multi player trades also involving draft picks are nothing out of the norm.
In this magical fairy tale land where trades like this happen, this would make a whole lot of sense. In Washington they NEED a quarterback. Alex Smith is not playing in 2019, if ever. Colt McCoy is best served as a back up, or spot starter. The belief is that if the Redskins are on the clock at 15 they’ll select the best Quarterback available.
Well, in Pittsburgh, they’ve got 3 intriguing ball slingers on the roster. Ben Roethlisberger isn’t going anywhere, and FOR DAMN SURE he isn’t going anywhere attached to Antonio Brown. Behind him are 2017 draft pick Josh Dobbs out of Tennessee. The Steelers seem to like Dobbs a lot, and in fact he held off 2018 3rd rounder Mason Rudolph as Roethlisberger’s top understudy.
That seemingly makes Mason Rudolph available. It is possible that coming out of Oklahoma State that the Steelers felt Rudolph needed a year to get acclimated to a pro-style offense and intend to elevate him in 2019. But if that is the case, then Dobbs is expendable. Having 3 quarterbacks is a luxury.
So you have the Redskins interested in Antonio Brown. They need a quarterback, and the Steelers have more than they need. They also need to jettison Josh Norman’s contract.
The Steelers are relying upon Joe Haden, who is not the Joe Haden of old, and parts held together with scotch tape when it comes to their secondary. Adding Josh Norman would provide a nice boost to the Steelers defense. There really isn’t a corner the caliber of Norman available on the free agent market this year. Plenty of very good safeties, but not a whole lot that screams SPLASH in the corner market.
So between the big ticket items in the moving van, Antonio Brown and Josh Norman. The young quarterback crossing the Potomac, and draft picks, this could be a mutually beneficial deal for everyone. If the Redskins were to trade for Brown, they’d likely cut Norman anyways, hell there are rumors that it may happen regardless of Brown. By trading him to Pittsburgh, it’d lessen the draft asset hit that they’d need to take to acquire Brown, and ensure he doesn’t end up with the Giants or Cowgirls, who would love to have him (and I’d pay to see the Giants practices of OBJ going against Norman).
This is how the trade would break down:
Josh Norman – Cornerback
Redskins 2019 1st rounder (15th overall)
Redskins 2019 3rd rounder (76th overall)
Redskins 2019 5th rounder (153rd overall)
Antonio Brown – Wide Receiver
Mason Rudolph – Quarterback
Pittsburgh 2019 1st rounder (20th overall)
Pittsburgh 2019 4th rounder (122nd overall)
This is a deal that benefits everyone. The Redskins the star receiver they’ve sought since Art Monk walked out that door. The Steelers acquire a stud corner, and move up in the first round. They also move up from the 4th into the 3rd round, and acquire a 5th round kicker for letting Rudolph go.
Where will Brown actually end up? Probably some team nobody is even talking about, the Panthers, or Lions or something. But honestly, when you look at how Antonio Brown has been acting, and the look he has going, doesn’t that just scream Washington D.C.? Isn’t that where most clowns end up?
- Written by Jason Sullivan
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