2022 NFL Draft: 1 Trade That Makes Sense for Each Team

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    Butch Dill/Associated Press

    We’re less than two weeks from the NFL draft, and while the anticipation of whose name will be read at each slot is the biggest thrill for fans, there’s another source of excitement.

    The trades. Every year, the first round features a handful. The draft as a whole features dozens.

    Now, not every team will make a trade. Some stand pat the whole draft. Others make like Monty Hall so often that it’s hard to keep track. Some trades involve just picks. Others include players.

    But fans of every club enjoy rumination on what deal(s) their team might make over draft weekend.

    That’s what we’re here to do.

    Using the trade value chart created in the ’90s by Jimmy Johnson, and modernized through the years, this piece contains one potential deal for every NFL team. Some are blockbusters. Others are much more modest. Most of them won’t happen.

    But they are all plausible enough that the general manager on the other end of the phone wouldn’t just bray in laughter and hang up.

    OK. Most of them wouldn’t.

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    Cardinals receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 3 overall), 2022 second-round pick (No. 37 overall), 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 108 overall), 2023 first-round pick (via CLE), QB Davis Mills

    Texans receive: QB Kyler Murray

    Might as well start things off with a bang.

    In an offseason filled with quarterback trades and drama the likes of which we have never seen, Arizona’s Kyler Murray is the latest soap opera. Murray is reportedly adamant about not playing for the Redbirds in 2022 without a new contract. After a disastrous outing in the playoffs last year and with two years left on his rookie deal, the Cardinals don’t appear to be in a rush to give him one.

    That impasse has started the trade rumors swirling. And of all the teams in the league, Houston is the one best-positioned to make a play for Murray—thanks to the bonanza of picks the Browns just sent the team for Deshaun Watson.

    Consider this: Even if the Texans give Arizona everything listed in that sizable haul above, Houston would still have the 13th overall pick and two Day 2 selections this year, a first-rounder next year and two firsts in 2024.

    If a Murray trade is an actual possibility, Houston can make easily the best offer—and throw in a stopgap quarterback in Davis Mills. The Cardinals can try again at quarterback with the third pick or trade back a few spots, add picks and still get a QB.

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    Falcons receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 32 overall)

    Lions receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 43 overall), 2022 second-round pick (No. 58 overall)

    The Atlanta Falcons are being bandied about as a leading potential landing spot for a Kyler Murray trade, but rather than gut Atlanta’s draft capital for the next several years, we’ll go with something a little less dramatic here.

    With the eighth overall selection, the Falcons have been picked in more than one mock draft to add a quarterback in that spot. But the Falcons need more than just that. Outside of tight end Kyle Pitts, the Falcons have the weakest assemblage of offensive firepower in the NFL.

    Running back. Wide receiver. You name it, Atlanta needs it.

    Now, the Falcons could wait in a deep receiver class and see what falls to them with their two second-rounders. But an argument can be made that the team should be more aggressive in that regard and attack the board with a move up that could net Atlanta Iowa State running back Breece Hall or Penn State wideout Jahan Dotson. Or Atlanta could grab a receiver at No. 8 and hope that a QB slides to the back of the round.

    Either way, the Falcons gain one more thing by moving into the back of Round 1: a fifth-year option on the player taken in that spot. The Lions (a team with a similarly depleted roster) gain a pair of picks inside the top 60 if there isn’t a player at No. 32 who piques their interest.

    There’s not much difference in 2022 between the No. 30 player and No. 60. What the class lacks in talent, it makes up for in depth.

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    Ravens receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 7 overall)

    Giants receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 14 overall), 2022 second-round pick (No. 45 overall)

    This potential trade contains a caveat: a top-three edge-rusher being available at No. 7, which would require Kayvon Thibodeaux to be more the player folks were calling the No. 1 overall prospect a year ago and less the nebulous prospect who has been sliding down draft boards. Or Georgia’s Travon Walker to dip a bit more than most expect.

    We already saw the Ravens try (and fail) to land edge-rusher Za’Darius Smith in free agency. And when Thibodeaux is on his game, the 6’5″, 258-pounder is a scheme versatile game-wrecker. Walker put on an eye-opening display of athleticism at the combine.

    For the Giants, it’s a continuation of a theme found throughout this piece—stockpiling draft capital while staying inside the top 15 of the draft.

    Assuming the Ravens fashion themselves a contender, moving up to fill a need is worth the cost.

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    Bills receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 34 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 97 overall)

    Lions receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 25 overall)

    The Bills enter the 2022 draft in an enviable position—there aren’t a lot of holes in the roster. That makes the Bills a prime candidate to be one of those contending teams that slides back on Day 1 in an effort to add some more picks.

    This isn’t to say that the Bills don’t have holes. Depth at wide receiver behind Stefon Diggs and Gabriel Davis is an issue. Like most teams, the Bills could use help with the pass rush, the offensive line and in the secondary.

    The thing is, the drop-off in talent at those positions from Pick 25 to Pick 34 is relatively negligible. Prospects like Texas A&M guard Kenyon Green, Georgia wide receiver George Pickens and Tennessee cornerback Alontae Taylor could all easily be available.

    The Bills shouldn’t pass on a guy they love at No. 25. But they also shouldn’t feel forced to grab a player in that spot if a team wants to get back into/move up in Round 1.

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    Panthers receive: QB Jimmy Garoppolo

    Niners receive: 2023 second-round pick, 2024 second-round pick

    The Carolina Panthers have been trying to remedy the quarterback position for years. Last year’s deal for Sam Darnold is why the Panthers will be sitting Day 2 of this year’s draft out. It’s also why some will no doubt roll their eyes at the idea of the Panthers going the veteran route again rather than taking a rookie at No. 6 overall.

    But Jimmy Garoppolo is a different player than Darnold or Teddy Bridgewater. Say what you will about Garoppolo, but he led the 49ers to a Super Bowl berth and had them a game away from a second trip in three years last season.

    This deal for Garoppolo gets the Niners the pair of second-round picks the team reportedly already had on the table (a deal in retrospect they should have accepted). It gets the Panthers a capable, proven veteran starter under center.

    And it opens the door for Carolina to deal that sixth overall pick to a team that is in love with one of this year’s rookies and recoup some of the draft capital it has expended in recent years in the process.

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    Bears receive: 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 107 overall), 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 108 overall)

    Texans receive: RB David Montgomery, 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 148 overall)

    The Bears are facing a difficult decision in 2022.

    David Montgomery has become a capable every-down NFL back. In 2020, he eclipsed 1,000 rushing yards and caught 54 passes. But Montgomery is also heading into a contract year, and a rebuilding Bears team isn’t going to want to pay Montgomery the kind of annual salary he’s likely going to seek in a new contract.

    Now, the franchise tag in 2023 is a possibility. But the Bears could also look to move Montgomery to gain draft picks in a year in which the team doesn’t have many. Chicago has a back on the roster in second-year pro Khalil Herbert who answered the bell in 2021 and could be ready for an expanded role.

    A pair of picks early in Round 4 may not appear to be much of a return for Montgomery, and the Bears might be able to goose that to a third-rounder. But running back just isn’t a highly valued position in today’s NFL.

    With that said, given that Rex Burkhead was Houston’s leading rusher last year, a Texans team with picks galore could be open to bolstering its ground game to take some pressure off whoever opens the season under center.

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    Bengals receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 39 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 71 overall)

    Bears receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 31 overall)

    The Cincinnati Bengals are in uncharted waters in 2022. This is a team that is used to picking a lot closer to the front end of the first round than the back.

    It may well be that the Bengals shouldn’t pick in Round 1 at all this year.

    This isn’t to say the Bengals should absolutely trade back toward the end of the first round. There are no absolutes in an exercise like this. If a player falls to the 31st spot that the Cincy front office loves, then the team should grab him with a smile.

    But if there isn’t a player available there who truly turns Cincinnati’s gears, you can bet the rent there will be a team that badly wants to jump into the back end of Round 1 and grab a guy with a fifth-year option attached.

    Whether it’s the Bears, Jets, Chiefs or Giants, there are a number of clubs with all kinds of Day 2 draft capital that could offer the Bengals the chance to stockpile picks in the top 75—and add depth to a roster that doesn’t have many glaring holes.

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    Browns receive: 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 109)

    Seahawks receive: QB Baker Mayfield

    Right about now, Browns fans are storming off to Twitter to fire off missives calling me an idiot for asserting that all the Browns can get for Baker Mayfield at this point is a Day 3 pick.

    Apparently, they haven’t been paying attention. Because as things stand right now, the trade market for the first overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft is nonexistent.

    That could change, though. There are two QB-needy teams ahead of Seattle in the draft order (Atlanta and Carolina) and two more (Detroit and Houston) that could draft a quarterback. It’s well within the realm of reason that by the time Seattle goes on the clock at No. 9, three quarterbacks have been drafted.

    I know what the mock drafts say. But I also know that NFL teams lose their minds over quarterbacks.

    If the Seahawks get frozen out of the quarterback prospect they desire, taking a one-year flier on Mayfield is going to become a lot more attractive.

    Especially since the alternative is (shudder) starting Drew Lock or Geno Smith.

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    Cowboys receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 4 overall), 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 163 overall)

    Jets receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 24 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 88 overall), 2023 first-round pick

    While speaking to reporters last week, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones made it clear Dallas is open to moving up in the 2022 draft.

    “I would trade up [in] this draft, and just going in [that’s] as much as you can say about it until you see what’s there or who’s on the other line,” Jones said.

    This is what it would take to make that move. Seattle, Carolina and Atlanta all want quarterbacks. The division-rival Giants would likely ask for even more than the Jets. So would the Texans, who pick at No. 3.

    It’s a pricey, “win-now” move. But if Dallas did shoot up the board, it could have its pick of this year’s wide receivers. Add an elite tackle prospect. Land a top-three edge-rusher. Make a splash.

    And let’s face it—no owner in the NFL loves splashing more than Jones.

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    Broncos receive: 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 106 overall)

    Jaguars receive: OG/C Lloyd Cushenberry III

    The good news is that the Denver Broncos have their quarterback now in Russell Wilson.

    The bad news is that acquiring Russell Wilson cost the team a lot. The Broncos don’t have a ton of high picks with which to improve the roster around Wilson this year. At least in the short term.

    That puts dealing veteran players for draft picks on the table for the Broncos—especially at positions where the team has depth.

    Last year, Lloyd Cushenberry III played 1,039 snaps at center for the Broncos. He wasn’t great—Cushenberry allowed five sacks and struggled somewhat in run-blocking. But Cushenberry has been a full-time starter each of the past two seasons and would add some badly needed experience and versatility to a Jaguars line that struggled a season ago.

    Adding that kind of veteran presence is worth the first pick on the draft’s final day this year, and the Broncos already have a replacement waiting in the wings in second-year pro Quinn Meinerz.

    Never mind that if the Broncos add to all the late-round picks they have (Denver has no picks inside the top 60 but eight overall, including three on Day 2), it’s possible general manager George Paton could assemble a package to get Denver back into the first half of Round 2.

    Wilson might just get that immediate help after all.

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    Lions receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 15 overall), 2022 first-round pick (No. 18 overall), 2023 third-round pick

    Eagles receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 2 overall)

    Later in this piece, we’ll come across a scenario where the Philadelphia Eagles are sellers and continue stockpiling picks as they had dating back to last year.

    Here, we’ll consider the flip side—that after the Jacksonville Jaguars pick, Eagles general manager Howie Roseman gets the vapors and wants a certain player really, really bad.

    Should that be the case, the Lions should absolutely consider an offer.

    The Lions are (as they always seem to be) in the midst of a rebuild. Getting edge-rusher (and Michigan kid) Aidan Hutchinson on the roster would appear to be a no-brainer. But if he’s gone, an elite offensive tackle isn’t a need, as Detroit already has a quietly solid offensive line. What the team doesn’t have is offensive weaponry. And a consistent pass rush. And quality linebackers. And a solid secondary.

    A trade like this would give the Lions a whopping four picks in the top 35—and an extra Day 2 pick in 2023. They could add a wideout. A cornerback. A pass-rusher. And an elite linebacker. All in just over a day.

    That may do more to accelerate Detroit’s rebuild than adding one potential superstar.

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    Packers receive: WR Tyler Lockett, 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 152 overall)

    Seahawks receive: QB Jordan Love, 2022 second-round pick (No. 53 overall), 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 171 overall)

    There is no shortage of trade speculation regarding Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf. But according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, as of two weeks ago, the team wasn’t listening to offers.

    However, it might be easier to get Seattle to entertain offers for their other star receiver.

    The Packers’ Super Bowl window isn’t getting any wider, and the notion that the Pack can replace Davante Adams’ production with a bunch of rookies is folly. Aaron Rodgers isn’t the most trusting of quarterbacks. He wants a target with experience. One who will be where he’s supposed to be when he’s supposed to be there.

    Tyler Lockett is just that kind of receiver—a seven-year veteran who has topped 1,000 receiving yards each of the past three years. Adding him wouldn’t excite the fanbase as much as Metcalf, but he could possibly be had without sacrificing Green Bay first-round picks—especially if general manager Brian Gutekunst throws in a first-round quarterback prospect.

    Jordan Love is a sunk cost. If he can seal improvement in the passing game, send him packing.

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    Texans receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 17 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 79 overall)

    Chargers receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 13 overall)

    To be clear, the Los Angeles Chargers are included here more as a placeholder than anything. The genesis for this deal is simple: When the 13th pick rolls around, a player is on the board whom one of the teams picking just behind Houston covets.

    At that point, Houston should listen to offers—intently.

    Let’s face it, Houston’s roster is a mess. This team needs quantity as much as quality. The third overall pick could even be in play if general manager Nick Caserio receives a “Godfather” offer. But it’s much more likely that pick No. 13 could net the Texans a Day 2 selection while only dropping them a handful of spots.

    But wait, there’s more!

    In this scenario, the Texans would then possess two top-20 picks, the fifth pick in Round 2 and three picks in Round 3.

    If there’s a player on the board Houston likes toward the end of Round 1, the Texans have ample ammo to trade up and grab him.

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    Colts receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 21 overall), 2022 sixth-round pick (No. 201 overall), 2023 fourth-round pick

    Patriots receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 42 overall), 2023 first-round pick, 2023 fifth-round pick

    In recent years, the Colts have thrown a ton of draft capital at the quarterback position. The Carson Wentz deal didn’t work out. The Matt Ryan deal remains to be seen.

    Regardless of how you feel about those transactions, it’s clear that general manager Chris Ballard is serious about winning now. And if that’s the case, Indy might as well go all the way with it.

    The Colts are a good team. But they aren’t without needs on both sides of the ball. The left tackle spot is a question mark. The wide receivers outside of Michael Pittman Jr. aren’t especially imposing. Even with Stephon Gilmore now in town, the cornerback room could use some help.

    If the Colts have an opportunity to make a run at a player like Ohio State wide receiver Chris Olave or Northern Iowa tackle Trevor Penning, landing them could be worth parting with yet another first-rounder.

    For the Patriots, it’s classic Belichick. Sliding out of Round 1 to grab extra picks the following year. New England already made its play for a wide receiver this year with the DeVante Parker trade. This recoups the expense involved there while still keeping the Pats inside the top 10 in Round 2.

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    Jaguars receive: 2022 second-round Pick (No. 39 overall), 2023 second-round pick

    Bears receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 33 overall)

    If you were expecting some sort of blockbuster trade involving the first overall pick, sorry to disappoint. If the Jaguars are smart, they will stand pat and make a relatively safe, boring, smart pick by taking Michigan edge-rusher Aidan Hutchinson.

    Sometimes, floor matters more than ceiling.

    But in addition to having the first overall pick, the Jags have another highly coveted selection: the first pick of Day 2. If a prospect like Purdue edge-rusher George Karlaftis or Arkansas wide receiver Treylon Burks slips to Round 2, the Jags will be taking calls all night Thursday and into Friday from teams interested in moving up.

    Say a team like the Chicago Bears, who need wide receiver help in the worst way. Darnell Mooney and Byron Pringle aren’t scaring anyone, and the league’s weakest wideout corps isn’t exactly putting second-year quarterback Justin Fields in the best position to succeed.

    The Jaguars don’t just need talent. They need lots of talent. Sliding back a handful of spots makes all the sense in the world if it means adding an extra Day 2 pick, either this year or next.

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    Chiefs receive: WR DK Metcalf

    Seahawks receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 29 overall), 2022 first-round pick (No. 30 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 94 overall), 2023 fourth-round pick

    As reported by Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, the New York Jets reportedly offered the 10th overall pick in this year’s draft to the Seahawks for wide receiver DK Metcalf. Seattle general manager John Schneider told Gang Green to pound sand.

    It might be harder for Schneider to dismiss an offer that includes two first-round picks—especially when both picks are in this year’s draft.

    Yes, the Chiefs would be giving up more for Metcalf than they got for Tyreek Hill. The team has made an effort to replenish Hill’s loss with the addition of JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. And Metcalf’s contract situation could leave the Chiefs in the same boat they were in with Hill.

    But the AFC West has gone absolutely bonkers this season. The conference as a whole is stacked. Kansas City isn’t hosting a fifth straight AFC title game by playing it safe.

    Besides, it’s just fun to imagine Mahomes scrambling around before heaving a 65-yard bomb that Metcalf leaps over three defenders to high-point…six times a game.

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    Raiders receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 40 overall)

    Seahawks receive: 2022 third-round pick (No. 86 overall), 2023 second-round pick, 2023 fifth-round pick

    After dealing their first two picks to the Green Bay Packers in the Davante Adams trade this year, the Las Vegas Raiders aren’t well positioned to make any big moves up this year. Getting back into the first round would probably be prohibitively expensive.

    But that doesn’t mean the Raiders couldn’t still make a move up if a prospect drops or a player at a position of need (like, say, Tulsa offensive tackle Tyler Smith or Auburn cornerback Roger McCreary) is available.

    In a scenario like this, a team like the Seahawks could be a perfect trade partner, as the team has back-to-back picks at Nos. 40 and 41.

    It would cost some picks in next year’s draft (maybe more than what’s listed here), but the Raiders have made it abundantly clear they are about competing now.

    Improving the offensive line and secondary would be a sizable help in that regard.

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    Chargers receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 46 overall)

    Vikings receive: 2022 third-round pick (No. 79 overall), 2023 second-round pick

    The Los Angeles Chargers have already been very busy this offseason, both in free agency and on the trade market. But the deal that brought edge-rusher Khalil Mack to La La Land knocked the Bolts out of Round 2.

    And there’s a good reason for the Chargers to get back into it.

    The Chargers have attempted to upgrade their off-ball linebackers in recent years, whether it was in the draft with Kenneth Murray or in free agency this year with Troy Reeder. But as of yet, the results haven’t been there. Last year, the Chargers were 30th in run defense.

    There are some exciting prospects at the position this year in Georgia’s Nakobe Dean, Utah’s Devin Lloyd and Wyoming’s Chad Muma.

    There’s a decent chance at least one of those linebackers will slide into the middle of Day 2.

    If they do, the Chargers should be prepared to pounce, while Minnesota could be tempted into trading out of Round 2 if it means an additional second in 2023.

    The Bolts appear willing to part with those of late.

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    Rams receive: RB Saquon Barkley

    Giants receive: 2022 third-round pick (No. 104), 2023 fourth-round pick

    Los Angeles Rams general manager Les Snead has made it abundantly clear that he values draft picks about as much as a three-week old bag of Salsa Verde Doritos. Time and again, he has been willing (even eager) to pursue big-name veterans.

    Why not go after another one?

    Saquon Barkley wasn’t especially impressive with the Giants in 2021—he failed to hit 600 rushing yards and averaged just 3.7 yards per carry. But Barkley was also saddled with running behind an atrocious offensive line, and he managed to stay relatively healthy, playing in 13 games.

    If Barkley can come anywhere close to recapturing the form that saw him eclipse 2,000 total yards and win Offensive Rookie of the Year honors in 2018, then he would make a potent Rams offense all the more terrifying. That possibility alone is worth gambling a third-rounder and another pick next year.

    Yes, the Rams appear to have a pair of capable backs in Darrell Henderson and Cam Akers. But both have struggled with injuries, and neither is on the same plane talent-wise as Barkley.

    Snead loves those big names.

    It might not appear to be much of a haul for the Giants, but between Barkley’s injury history and expiring contract, the reality is this is at least close to as good as it’s going to get.

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    Dolphins receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 23 overall)

    Cardinals receive: 2022 third-round pick (102nd overall), 2023 first-round pick, 2023 third-round pick

    The Miami Dolphins are in something of a unique spot. After the megatrade for wide receiver Tyreek Hill, the Dolphins don’t have a selection in the top 100 this year.

    What Miami does have is a pair of first-rounders in 2023. So if general manager Chris Grier wants to get back into this year’s draft, he can do it.

    It’s just going to cost him, and given the chips Grier has pushed into the middle of the table, it doesn’t appear he’s interested in dealing veteran starters to do it.

    Still, if a pass-rusher like Purdue’s George Karlaftis or an interior O-lineman like Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum is there in the 20s and Grier feels that rookie could be the piece that locks everything into place, then offering a team like the Arizona Cardinals a 2023 first-rounder plus some sweetener is a gamble that could be worth taking.

    In for a penny, in for a pound.

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    Vikings receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 16 overall), 2022 second-round pick (No. 49 overall)

    Saints receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 12 overall)

    The Vikings could be in a pickle. If the top quarterbacks trickle off the board on April 28, then Minnesota’s 12th overall pick could be highly coveted by teams picking later in the round looking to the future under center.

    If there’s a run and four are taken in the top 10 picks, then the Vikes will probably be making the pick themselves.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    The guess here is that things fall somewhere in between—that, say, three signal-callers are gone when the Vikes go on the clock. And if that’s the case, a purple phone will start ringing.

    Let’s just imagine it’s purple.

    In this instance, the team could hold out for an extra first. But if the Saints offer the first of their two firsts and their second-rounder, Minnesota would gain an extra pick inside the top 50 while only dropping back four spots. The player they wanted at No. 12 could easily still be there.

    Minnesota could have its cake and eat it, too, while the Saints keep their second first-rounder and get their quartarback of the future.

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    Patriots receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 28 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 92 overall)

    Packers receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 21 overall)

    There are certain constants with the NFL draft. Mel Kiper’s hair. Roger Goodell being booed. And Bill Belichick trading down in the first round.

    This particular trade would certainly raise some eyebrows. As things stand now, the Pats pick ahead of Green Bay, another team with a need at wide receiver. Do this deal, and the available crop of wideouts could be shallower once Belichick goes on the clock.

    However, the trade keeps the Pats ahead of Kansas City (another team just about everyone expects to take a wideout with one of its first-rounders), and it recoups the third-rounder lost in the DeVante Parker deal.

    Bedsides, Belichick has never really been a “draft for need” type. He’s just as likely to trade back, grab a defensive back and wait until the back half of Day 2 to draft a wide receiver. Or not draft a receiver at all after adding Parker to a room that includes Nelson Agholor, Kendrick Bourne and Jakobi Meyers.

    Darth Hoodie’s mind is a mystery.

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    Saints receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 4 overall)

    Jets receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 16 overall), 2022 first-round pick (No. 19 overall)

    As you have probably already noticed, the New York teams are the fulcrum on which the first round will pivot in 2022. Both clubs have a pair of picks inside the top 10. If a team wants to play Let’s Make a Deal and grab a quarterback, it’s the Jets or Giants who will be the likely trade partner.

    The New Orleans Saints, on the other hand, have made it abundantly clear they are up to something after their blockbuster deal with the Philadelphia Eagles. Maybe general manager Mickey Loomis is done moving and shaking.

    Or maybe he’s only just getting started.

    Barring a trade or a major surprise, the first three picks in this year’s draft probably won’t be quarterbacks. If the point of all these machinations has been grabbing a long-term answer at the position, then a move to No. 4 would give the Saints their pick of the lot.

    For the Jets, it’s an easy “yes.” After all, the team just drafted a quarterback last year, and this move would leave it with three picks inside the top 20.

    And with all kinds of options.

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    Giants receive: 2022 third-round pick (No. 94 overall)

    Chiefs receive: CB James Bradberry

    We have already seen the Kansas City Chiefs swing one move for a Pro Bowl veteran in this piece.

    Might as well do another.

    The Chiefs and Giants are two teams barreling in opposite directions. The Chiefs are obviously in “win now” mode and have a hole in the secondary. There has been speculation for weeks that the team could have interest in James Bradberry, who carries a whopping $21.9 million cap hit in 2022.

    Frankly, were it not for that cap hit, Bradberry would already have been dealt. It has reached the point that the Giants are reportedly willing to eat some of Bradberry’s salary to get him off the roster. That cap hit could also be lessened if Bradberry is willing to restructure his deal and potentially add a voidable year or two.

    For the rebuilding Giants, it’s a big contract off the books and more draft capital with which to add young talent. For the Chiefs, it’s a desperately needed veteran presence on the back end.

    And for the 28-year-old Bradberry, it’s a chance to win.

    There hasn’t been much of that in his career so far.

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    Jets receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 7 overall)

    Giants receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 10 overall), OT Mekhi Becton

    It’s time to play “let’s say.”

    Let’s say the New York Jets spend the fourth overall pick on one of this year’s elite tackle prospects, whether it’s Ikem Ekwonu of North Carolina State or Alabama’s Evan Neal. It would be a great get for the Jets, but one that creates a logjam at left tackle.

    Let’s also say the Jets covet a player for the defense like Cincinnati cornerback Ahmad Gardner. The Jets pick again at No. 10, but it’s far from a sure thing that Gardner will still be available.

    Something would have to give—and the answer could lie on the other side of MetLife Stadium.

    The Giants aren’t likely to move down five spots without receiving a hefty return. But three spots could be easier to stomach—especially if the Jets throw in Mekhi Becton, a mauling 6’7″, 363-pound 2020 first-round pick who might benefit from a move to the right side of the line.

    Sure, the Jets could just flip Becton themselves. But they have a capable veteran right tackle in George Fant, and Becton’s youth and potential are the theoretical sugar in this deal that convinces the Giants to slide back three spots.

    The Jets get their guys. The Giants still have two top-10 picks and get some offensive line help.

    Lord knows they need it.

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    Eagles receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 32 overall), 2023 first-round pick (via LAR)

    Lions receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 15 overall), 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 154 overall)

    There is no shortage of mock drafts with at least one of the top quarterback prospects falling into the back half of the first round.

    If that happens, teams like the Pittsburgh Steelers and Detroit Lions (who have stopgaps under center) will start seriously considering a move up.

    And the Philadelphia Eagles are going to be sitting there, ready to keep stockpiling first-round picks.

    The Eagles already added their second first-rounder next year in a trade with the New Orleans Saints. Flipping the 15th pick would keep Philly in Round 1 while adding a third first-rounder in the 2023 draft.

    And just as the Eagles did with their trio of first-rounders in 2022, when you have that kind of clout on draft day, it sets you up in an excellent position to either bring in a massive haul of talent or parlay those picks into even more.

    On one end of the spectrum, there’s Les Snead.

    Howie Roseman appears to prefer the opposite end.

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    Winslow Townson/Associated Press

    Steelers receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 10 overall), 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 163 overall)

    Jets receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 20 overall), 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 138 overall), 2023 first-round pick

    Here it is—the trade up for a franchise quarterback that some have predicted the Steelers could make in 2022. In a recent mock draft by PFF, Brad Spielberger proposed a similar trade in which the Steelers netted Cincinnati’s Desmond Ridder.

    “It could make sense for the Steelers to target a pro-ready signal-caller,” he said, “who could step in and start from Day 1 while being surrounded by a roster that’s ready to win right away in a supercompetitive AFC North division.”

    It would be something of a departure for Pittsburgh. The franchise hasn’t done a lot of moving and shaking on draft day, but it wouldn’t be unheard of. Back in 2019, the Steelers made a move up to the same draft slot (No. 10 overall) to select linebacker Devin Bush.

    It’s simple, really. If Pittsburgh sees the guy it wants still on the board at the back of the top 10, the first-rounder in next year’s draft is worth it. And a rebuilding Jets team should be willing to listen to any offer that gets the team additional first-rounders in the future.

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    49ers receive: 2023 second-round pick, 2023 fifth-round pick.

    Dolphins receive: 2022 third-round pick (93rd overall), 2022 fourth-round pick (No. 134 overall)

    OK, so this is the most boring trade of any entry on this list. But the reality is that unless the Niners find a taker for Jimmy Garopppolo (which we already touched on), San Francisco doesn’t have much in the way of ammo unless they do something wild like trade Deebo Samuel.

    I’m not prepared to jump off that cliff yet, and I don’t believe the Niners are either.

    This admittedly isn’t an exciting trade. It’s not going to elicit cheers from fans or attaboys from pundits. But if, as Day 2 of the draft moves along, a player drops for whatever reason that a team wants, the Niners might just be able to package a third-rounder with a Day 3 pick and get a second in 2023.

    It’s a “think ahead” move—the sort of move that John Lynch needs to keep in mind.

    After all, it’s not like San Francisco has a first-rounder in 2023, either.

    For the Dolphins, it’s all about adding more players now. As was mentioned earlier, Chris Grier appears to be making his run in 2022 after pulling the megadeal for Tyreek Hill.

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    Seahawks receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 5 overall)

    Giants receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 9 overall), 2022 third-round pick (No. 72 overall), 2023 third-round pick

    Yes, this trade flies in the face of the earlier deal in which the Seahawks deal for Baker Mayfield. Consider this “Plan B.” Or “Plan No B(aker),” as it were.

    Let’s say that the Seahawks have fallen in love with one of this year’s top quarterback prospects and that the Houston Texans are confident in Davis Mills (or leery enough about this year’s class under center) that they pass on a QB at No. 3 overall. So do the Detroit Lions at No. 2.

    Hey, a general manager can hope.

    That would mean that when the Giants go on the clock at No. 5, all the signal-callers would still be available. But with the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers lurking between No. 5 and Seattle’s pick at No. 9, it isn’t going to stay that way.

    The Seahawks get their heir to Russell Wilson. The Giants add a pair of Day 2 picks without falling from the top-10.

    Smiles all around.

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    Buccaneers receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 35 overall), 2022 fifth-round pick (No. 146 overall), 2023 third-round pick

    Jets receive: 2022 first-round pick (27th overall)

    No fan base likes to watch the first round of a draft and not see their team make a pick. But for teams helmed by Tom Brady, it’s really old hat.

    The Buccaneers, at present, only hold six picks in this year’s draft, with the first coming at No. 27. But the reality, especially in this year’s class, is that there isn’t a ton of drop-off from the end of Day 1 to the early stages of Day 2.

    This trade would be an opportunity for the Buccaneers to still add a potential starter along the offensive line, some talent in the secondary, or play some more Monty Hall when the phones start ringing from teams who want one of the first few picks of Day 2. The team would recoup one of the Day 3 picks lost in previous trades and add a Day 2 pick in 2023.

    It’s not an exciting move, but it’s a wise one. Meanwhile, the Jets get a third first-rounder and the buzz about “winning” the draft that comes with it.

    About time the Jets won something.

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    Titans receive: 2022 second-round pick (No. 36 overall)

    Giants receive: 2022 third-round pick (No. 90 overall), 2023 third-round pick, 2023 fifth-round pick

    The Tennessee Titans were the No. 1 seed in the AFC last season. However, it wasn’t reflected in the team’s performance in the playoffs—a flat loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in the divisional round.

    One of Tennessee’s biggest issues last season was poor pass protection, as Ryan Tannehill was dropped 47 times in the regular season. Per Mike Moraitis of Titans Wire, a trade up into the top of the second round could put a player like Central Michigan tackle Bernhard Raimann on the radar.

    “The 6’6″, 303-pound Austrian-born prospect brings great athleticism as a former tight end, wrestler and track and field athlete,” Moraitis wrote, “and despite his limited experience (two years) as a tackle, he already displays a solid understanding of fundamentals at the position.”

    In fact, the team could double-dip the O-line, pairing Raimann with an interior lineman like Zion Johnson of Boston College or Kenyon Green of Texas A&M.

    Mike Vrabel is very much a “games are won in the trenches” kind of coach.

    The Giants would admittedly lose their second-round pick. But the additional third would give them three in that round this year, so they could (in theory) move back into the second while adding a Day 2 pick next year.

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    Commanders receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 26 overall), 2022 first-round pick

    Titans receive: 2022 first-round pick (No. 11 overall)

    There are essentially three things the Commanders can do at 11th overall this year.

    The first, obviously, is nothing—stand pat and make a pick.

    The second, which appears less likely, is that the Commanders could move up. What makes that unlikely is the capital already invested in the Carson Wentz trade. Spending that much more to move up could leave the team short on picks this season (and potentially next).

    Then there’s the matter of trading down, perhaps finding a contender picking in the 20s (or later) that covets a player who falls to pick No. 11.

    The Titans are a team that could make sense as just such a partner, especially if an early run on quarterbacks causes some top-10 talents to slide.

    Tennessee is a good team, but as last year’s one-and-done postseason run showed, they also aren’t without holes. Adding a high-end defensive back, edge-rusher or offensive lineman could be worth punting next year’s first for a team with Super Bowl aspirations.

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