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6 blockbuster NFL trades we’d like to see during the NFL Draft

Vincent Frank

NFL trades have been a larger part of the offseason than free agency with blockbusters happening on a near never-ending loop.

From Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson to Tyreek Hill, some of the NFL’s biggest names have been dealt as teams attempt to replicate the success the defending champion Los Angeles Rams have had in this regard.

As we head into the 2022 NFL Draft, there’s a darn good chance that more big-time NFL trades will be the name of the game moving forward. Below, we look at six deals the NFL world would love to see during the 2022 NFL Draft.

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Cleveland Browns trade Baker Mayfield to the Seattle Seahawks

seattle seahawks, baker mayfield
Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
  • Seahawks get: Baker Mayfield
  • Browns get: 2nd round pick (41st overall)

This has been bandied about a whole lot since Cleveland made the blockbuster trade for Watson. Mayfield had requested a trade even before that deal went down. Unfortunately for the former No. 1 pick, the market has thinned out considerably. In fact, there’s mutual disinterest between Mayfield and the Carolina Panthers. That’s intriguing given Carolina’s QB situation (more on this below).

As for the Seahawks, they want us to believe that they’re willing to ride with Drew Lock next season after trading Wilson to Denver. That’s laughable. Head coach Pete Carroll is too old to waste a season with Lock under center. Meanwhile, Mayfield could likely be had for pennies on the dollar. Despite his obvious limitations, Mayfield would be a marked upgrade over Lock. It’s not close. This is one of the NFL trades we expect to happen during the draft in Vegas.

Related: 2022 NFL mock draft

Atlanta Falcons trade up with Houston Texans for Malik Willis

nfl trades: atlanta falcons trade up for malik willis
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
  • Falcons get: 3rd pick (Malik Willis)
  • Texans get: 8th pick, 2023 first-round pick

One of the biggest NFL trades of the offseason was the Falcons’ decision to move Matt Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts for pennies on the dollar. In doing so, Atlanta made it clear that the team is in rebuild mode with Marcus Mariota acting as a stopgap under center.

Why not utilize future draft capital to find that potential franchise quarterback to replace Ryan? At the cost of a first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, these Falcons find a succession plan under center.

As for Houston, the team has no need for a quarterback with Davis Mills looking the part of a starter-caliber signal caller moving forward. After trading Deshaun Watson to the Cleveland Browns for a package including three first-round picks, the Texans acquire another 2023 first rounder by moving down just five spots in the top 10 Thursday evening.

Related: 2022 NFL mock draft

San Francisco 49ers trade for Kadarius Toney

nfl trades: kadarius toney to the san francisco 49ers
Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com / USA TODAY NETWORK
  • 49ers get: Kadarius Toney
  • Giants get: 93rd pick, conditional 2023 draft pick

If the 49ers are indeed forced to move off Deebo Samuel (more on that below), it would not be a huge surprise if they turned around and acquired Toney from the Giants. The 2021 first-round pick is clearly on the trade block with New York’s new brass now seeing him as a fit moving forward.

  • Kadarius Toney stats (2021): 39 receptions, 420 yards, 68% catch rate (10 games)

Sure Toney is not even in the same league as Samuel. But he’s an ideal fit in Kyle Shanahan’s offense. That is to say, dynamic with the ball in his hands while boasting an ability to create immediate seperation. In return, New York adds a third-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft and a conditional mid-round selection next year. It’s probably the most the team can ask for Toney.

Related: Updated NFL trade rumors

Tennessee Titans trade A.J. Brown to the Philadelphia Eagles

nfl trades: a.j. brown to the philadelphia eagles
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
  • Eagles get: A.J. Brown
  • Titans get: 15th pick, Jalen Reagor, 2022 second-round pick

Did the Kansas City Chiefs change the landscape of the NFL wide receiver market by trading Tyreek Hill? An argument can be made that this is the case. In lieu of paying Hill a record-breaing contract, the Chiefs picked up five draft picks in return for the star receiver.

Set to hit his contract year, there’s now an off-chance that Brown might follow suit. Sure the Titans fancy themselves as title contenders. But paying Brown $25-plus million annually would handcuff this team big time given the Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill contracts.

Enter into the equation a Philadelphia Eagles team that boasts two first-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft and two first-round selections next year. Philly can offer up one of those selections, former first-round pick Jalen Reagor and a future second-round pick to Tennessee for Brown. It would be a major coup in teaming Brown up with DeVonta Smith for young quarterback Jalen Hurts.

Saquon Barkley trade to the Miami Dolphins

nfl trades: saquon barkley
Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com / USA TODAY NETWORK
  • Dolphins get: Saquon Barkley, 147th pick
  • Giants get: 102nd pick, conditional 2023 third-round pick

There’s a decent chance that New York will look to move off Barkley at some point after the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft later this week. He’s coming off two injury-plagued seasons and doesn’t fit into the team’s long-term plans.

It’s in this that reports suggest Barkley could be had for pennies on the dollar. Having already acquired Tyreek Hill in one of the biggest blockbuster NFL trades in recent memory, Miami makes perfect sense as a landing spot.

Imagine the dynamic Barkley starring in new head coach Mike McDaniel’s offense. If healthy, he’d add yet another element to an offense that is already set to take off big time next season.

Related: Saquon Barkley trade scenarios

San Francisco 49ers package Jimmy Garoppolo, Deebo Samuel to the Carolina Panthers

nfl trades: jimmy garoppolo, deebo samuel to the carolina panthers
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
  • Panthers get: Deebo Samuel, Jimmy Garoppolo
  • 49ers get: 6th pick, Jeremy Chinn, 2023 second-round pick

There’s been some thought given to the idea that Samuel wants to play closer to his native South Carolina. While the disgruntled 49ers star has pushed back against this notion, he likely wouldn’t decline a trade to the Panthers after requesting to be moved by San Francisco.

If that is indeed the case, the 49ers could very well force Carolina into taking on Jimmy Garoppolo’s contract. Meanwhile, the Panthers are said to be doing their homework on Garoppolo with the struggling Sam Darnold slated to be their starter right now. It wouldn’t be a shock if they opted to take on Garoppolo in order to land Samuel.

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As far as blockbuster NFL trades go, this one would be an absolute doozy. It would give San Francisco a top-six pick in the draft and a young safety in Jeremy Chinn as well as another important draft pick. Carolina gets Garoppolo and Samuel to team up with studs Christian McCaffrey and D.J. Moore. Talk about changing the dynamics in Carolina big time.

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